Housing and Homelessness

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 7:43 pm on 10th February 1987.

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Photo of Nick Raynsford Nick Raynsford , Fulham 7:43 pm, 10th February 1987

I am coming to an end. I am sure that the hon. Gentleman will be able to respond later.

Those inconvenient facts might interfere with some of the quaint ideas of the Secretary of State. I am sad that he is leaving the Chamber, because I was about to refer to his quaint comment that somehow the private rented sector was a key to ending queuing. Has the Secretary of State no experience of the degrading queues that all too often apply when people are looking for private housing? Does he know of the experience of so many desperate people who scour the newspapers looking for flats to rent? Does he know of the rush to get to the property first, to join the queue, only to find that there are 10 people in the queue? Does he know of the degrading experience of the person who has ready money in his pocket, who is able to jump the queue because he can offer the landlord cash in advance—key money—to get in, even if it means that the family in front of him in the queue will lose the home? Does he know of degrading experiences of queueing that are associated with private rented housing? All his responses show the insensitivity, the ignorance of real experience and the adherence to quaint and ancient Victorian values that characterise the Government.

The Government's record is appalling, and the sooner they are swept away by a Government who will do something about Britain's housing crisis, the better.