This policy was passed by Left Unity’s national conference on 29 March 2014.
There are many aspects to the housing crisis in Britain:
These all make housing a key policy issue for Left Unity.
A publicly-owned building corporation should be established, to ensure that planned targets for house-building are reached and to provide permanent trade union recognised employment and ongoing training for building workers. The capacity of local planning authorities must be supported and increased, including investment in training and education programmes for the planning sector.
Conference resolves that Left Unity should campaign for:
Conference therefore resolves to campaign on, and instructs future elected representatives to implement, the following:
Left Unity calls for a radical reform of the planning system, nationalisation of development rights, the introduction of mandatory housing standards, a new National Spatial Plan to provide a coherent and holistic strategic approach to planning for major housing and infrastructure investment and a large scale state construction programme, in partnership with local authorities and local communities, focusing on the regeneration of urban areas. All surplus public sector land put to use in order to support the programme.
Left Unity’s housing policies will respect the needs and struggles of LGBTQ people, many of whom are estranged from their families, and have been hit by cuts and will be forced on to the street if the Conservatives scrap housing benefit for the under 25s. Left Unity notes increasing homelessness and ‘sofa surfing’ by LGBTQ youth because of cuts in emergency accommodation and refuges. No one should ever have to sleep on the streets or sofa surf. To ensure that the needs of LGBTQ, the elderly from all communities, and other minority groups are respected in housing and to build at least one LGBTQ shelter-extra care units in every major conurbation.
In the short run we want a crash course in house building and appropriation and renovation of empty properties, which will revive communities.
In the longer term, a determined program of building good houses for cheap rents will bring us up against the heart of the property relations of capital, mainly the private ownership of land and the commodification of property
Left Unity recognises that there is much more than housebuilding needed to humanise and truly civilise our cities and wishes to work with international political campaign ‘The Right to the City’.
To this end, we invite supporters of Left Unity and all campaigning for dignity in housing and our other demands to attend a meeting on this matter in Liverpool, the first city to develop social housing, but now one of the cities most damaged by the government’s policies.
Left Unity is active in movements and campaigns across the left, working to create an alternative to the main political parties.
Events and protests from around the movement, and local Left Unity meetings.
Saturday 25th November
Trump: Nuclear Apocalypse or New Cold War?
Leeds Swarthmore Centre at 2pm with Kate Hudson, General Secretary, CND. The threat of nuclear war is at its highest level since the Cold War. What can socialists do to stop it? facebook here
Saturday 25th November
Discussing Catalan self-determination
South London Left Unity discussion, also talking about the future of the left outside the Labour Party: 1- 4pm, Camberwell Library, Camberwell Green London SE5 7AL. All welcome.
Saturday 2 December
Latin America Conference 2017
TUC Congress House London at 9.15am: With countries across Latin America facing a resurgent right and the threat of intervention from Trump, this year’s Latin America Conference will be the most crucial yet. More info here
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