Harriet Harman

Member of Parliament for Camberwell and Peckham. Mother of the House of Commons

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Many people have contacted me recently about the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation and Liability for Housing Standards) Bill and the important issues addressed by the bill.

It is a basic expectation that rental homes should be warm, dry and free from damp. I welcome the Government’s announcement that they will be supporting Karen Buck’s private members bill and I will continue to monitor its progress as it passes through the Commons.

This Tory Government has failed to tackle rogue landlords and ensure that renters have proper protections. Currently, landlords are under no obligation to make sure that the properties they let out are fit for human habitation. The only obligations that exist are to repair damage to the structure of the building and fix broken heating, gas, water or electricity installations. This does not cover common issues such as fire safety, inadequate heating or poor ventilation, which can lead to condensation and mould growth.

Local councils have powers to enforce fitness standards, but only 50% have served a notice in the last year. The bill would give tenants the power to take legal action against landlords who fail to maintain safe standards for rented homes and would enforce a responsibility on landlords to make properties fit for human habitation.

This bill will make important changes to protect tenants and has the potential to have a dramatic effect on the living conditions of the estimated 3 million low-income families living in substandard housing.

I will continue to work with Labour colleagues to press the Government to do more to tackle rogue landlords and improve conditions in rental accommodation.

Government Support for Homes Bill Welcome But More Needs To Be Done For Renters

Many people have contacted me recently about the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation and Liability for Housing Standards) Bill and the important issues addressed by the bill. It is a...

Many people have contacted me about the important issue of John Spellar’s bill to introduce an ‘Agent of Change rule’.

Local music venues are an important source of entertainment for local communities, and are critical to aspiring full-time musicians entering into the professional music industry, but they are increasingly under threat. Since 2007, more than half of London’s 430 live music venues have closed. A major reason for this is new residential developments submitting noise abatement orders against local music venues.

New developments should not be able to force long-standing local venues to close due to sound pollution. We need to strike a balance between building new homes and protecting our existing businesses.

An Agent of Change rule would fix this problem by making the person or business carrying out the change responsible for managing the impact of the change. This would mean developers building near an established live music venue would be responsible for the costs of providing adequate soundproofing, rather than money-pressed music venues.

I and my Labour colleagues will always stand up for our local music industry.

Supporting a New 'Agent for Change' Rule

Many people have contacted me about the important issue of John Spellar’s bill to introduce an ‘Agent of Change rule’. Local music venues are an important source of entertainment for...

My letter to the Equality and Human Rights Commission today regarding pay transparency. The justified anger must now spur the change for equal pay. As the equalities watchdog the EHRC must lead and the Government must give them the funding they need to do this:

 

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Equal Pay - Letter to Equality and Human Rights Commission

My letter to the Equality and Human Rights Commission today regarding pay transparency. The justified anger must now spur the change for equal pay. As the equalities watchdog the EHRC must lead and...


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