Autumn Statement

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Environment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 27th January 1993.

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Photo of John Battle John Battle , Leeds West 12:00 am, 27th January 1993

Does the Secretary of State agree that it is a bit premature to talk about a housing market recovery on the day we learn that mortgage arrears have shot up by 28 per cent. and more than 147,000 families with arrears of more than 12 months are staring eviction in the face? Will he confirm that the Prime Minister is to introduce cash handouts for mortgage deposits to get the housing market going? Would it not be better for him to address the real problem? People fear that they are a pay check away from redundancy, so they dare not risk long-term commitments. Rising unemployment is undermining the housing market. Will the Secretary of State confirm that every working day since 1989 more than 600 building workers have lost their jobs? Without tackling unemployment by investment, the Government have no hope of tackling the housing crisis.