Local Housing Allowance and Homelessness — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 10:43 am on 24th July 2019.

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Photo of Will Quince Will Quince The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 10:43 am, 24th July 2019

I thank my hon. Friend for that intervention; I was not aware of that scheme and will certainly look at it—it sounds very interesting. Subject to being in post in 24 or 48 hours, I will certainly commit to looking at that and to coming back to him with my thoughts.

Numerous Members, including the hon. Members for Ealing, Southall, and for Westminster North, my hon. Friend Andrew Selous and Brendan O'Hara, all raised the issue of housing for social rent. This is also an area that I am hugely passionate about. Local housing allowance rates and debates such as this are only half of the story. We must look at how we can increase the supply of housing that is affordable to people on low incomes to create a more sustainable system over the longer term.

I am keen to continue my work with colleagues in MHCLG to support them in looking at how we can increase the supply of housing for social and affordable rent and what more my Department might be able to do to achieve that. I urge my hon. Friends and hon. Members—not that I am supposed to—to address the issue of housing supply with my counterparts in MHCLG and to lobby accordingly. It is a hugely important issue. I share the thoughts of my hon. Friend the Member for South West Bedfordshire when he says that at the heart of the route for tackling poverty, improving health outcomes and improving educational attainment and employability is a secure and stable home, and that is something that we should prioritise.