Magenta Living tenants Muriel Wilkinson and Gill Foley, seized a unique opportunity to tell Alok Sharma, Minister of State for Housing and Planning, why social housing should be a key part of the Government’s strategy going forward.
In the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster, the Housing Minister has embarked on a series of events around the country to listen to the views of social housing tenants which will influence a Housing Green Paper to be released in 2018.
The two Magenta Living tenants, Muriel, a member of Magenta Living’s Board and Gill are involved in their own communities at Sunningdale in Moreton and Liscard House respectively and are both members of the Umbrella Group (Magenta Living’s involved residents group). Both were delighted to represent the views of Magenta Living tenants to the Minister, alongside over 100 tenants at the recent event in Preston.
Key themes for the Minister to consider included:
- Social Housing is a positive solution and should be treated as an important part of the housing agenda
- The Government should support Housing Associations to build more social housing
- Housing Associations should invest in maintaining quality housing options for people who cannot or choose not to buy their homes
- Government should ensure social landlords engage with their tenants
Muriel also took the opportunity to ask the Minister a direct question about the definition of ‘affordable housing’ and how it should be affordable to tenants.
During the journey back to their homes in Wirral, both tenants agreed the Housing Minister now has a clear picture of the positive contribution social housing can play and the challenge is with the Government to respond by building on what the Minister has heard.