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Housing and Homelessness Strategy: in the deep freeze

July 30, 2020 10:30 AM
Bamford Court East Finchley (Sachin Patel)

Bamford Court, East Finchley. A recent example of affordable housing in the borough

Barnet has done it again. Last year they scrapped the Housing Committee and bundled it into their regeneration committee. Now the renamed Housing and Growth Committee has decided to get rid of housing policy altogether. The committee voted to hand over responsibility for drawing up its housing and homelessness strategy to Barnet Homes, the arms-length body that manages the borough's housing stock.

Barnet Homes has always been a politically neutral organisation, one that has been respected across party lines. Now Barnet Tories seem determined to politicise it, while ensuring that elected councillors are unable to set policy to help homeless people and tenants facing problem landlords. It's a bizarre and undemocratic move. It seems like, with repossessions set to surge again from next month, Barnet is running away from the problem as fast as it can.