Lockdown and the impact of housing on occupants: call for participants

By Dillon Newton (@dillon_newton)   Researchers from the University of Huddersfield and Northern Housing Consortium are looking for residents and practitioners to be interviewed as part of the project ‘Lockdown and the impact of housing on occupants’.   The overall purpose of the study is to develop an understanding of the impact the lockdown measures, …

No Coronavirus Evictions: Protect Greater Manchester Residents!

By ACORN Manchester (@AcornManchester)   In order to protect Greater Manchester’s private renters from eviction during the COVID-19 outbreak ACORN Manchester calls on the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the 10 Local Authorities in the region to:   Prevent Homelessness: Make a public statement of commitment that they will prevent any evictions and homelessness due to …

Don’t let Coronavirus be an excuse for making planning less democratic

Safeguarding public voice in planning in the Covid era   A joint statement by Just Space, CPRE London, Friends of the Earth and London Forum of Amenity and Civic Societies   The new Covid-19 regulations for Local Authority meetings risk undermining the community’s role in the planning process, as decisions could be made in virtual …

‘Renters, Labour has your back.’ Really?

By Isaac Rose (@_isaacrose)   Today Labour announced their demands of the government to tackle the looming crisis facing renters. Some are welcome. Scrapping section 21, extending the current evictions ban for the duration of the crisis, and giving residential tenants the same protections as commercial tenants — all of these are good policies that …

All in this together? How a decade of austerity cleared the way for Covid-19 in deprived urban areas

By Tom Gillespie (@t_a_gillespie) and Kate Hardy (@katerhardy)   Addressing world leaders on Monday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson claimed that ‘it is humanity against the virus – we are in this together’. Sound familiar? ‘All in this together’ was the oft-repeated mantra used to justify cuts to public spending and welfare services during the Cameron-Osborne austerity years. Yet, …

Campaigners call for better post-lockdown vision for Manchester

By Climate Emergency Manchester (@ClimateEmergMcr)   Campaigners from various Manchester-based campaigning bodies, including Climate Emergency Manchester (1), have called for the City Council’s post-lockdown planning to be more transparent, and for it to place more emphasis on environmental and social justice improvements. They have produced an 11 page briefing paper (pdf here), one page summary here with …

Resetting the balance – for a People’s Rented Sector

By Joe Bilsborough (@joebilsborough)   The lack of government action to materially protect tenants, particularly those in the private rented sector, is disappointing but unsurprising. Political contestation in the UK is increasingly stratified along lines of housing tenure and access to housing, and the coronavirus crisis, despite attempts to occlude this fact, is intensely political. …

Reinstate the Planning Committee – Open Letter

We are writing to demand that Manchester City Council immediately return to a democratic decision making process for its planning committee. This means scrapping the delegated powers to make planning outcomes about the future of our city.  While we appreciate immediate concerns over both the safety of committee members and ensuring that virtual meetings are …