As many readers will know, Debbie Crew has been conducting a campaign about retaliatory evictions – typically in private tenancies where a tenant has complained about conditions in the property and got Environmental Health in, and the landlord promptly issues accelerated possession proceedings, to which there is no defence. I first mentioned it back here. Here is Debbie’s blog of the campaign.
Debbie has a lot of support for the campaign, including from ATRO, the tenancy relation officers organisation. She has cross-party parliamentary support, expressed in an Early Day Motion. But the final leap to getting proposals into the forthcoming green paper on private lettings needs a further hefty push, and particularly concrete evidence of the scale of the problem. (The York paper having helpfully dismissed CAB etc. concerns by saying, in effect, ‘well they would say that, wouldn’t they’ – the Mandy Rice Davis approach to policy formulation).
Debbie says that people with experience of retaliatory eviction, particularly tenants, are welcome to make contact and pass on their experience via the Campaign’s Facebook page.
My own (limited and anecdotal) experience is that this is an issue, particularly with the worst private landlords and, all too often, for the worst off and optionless tenants. To me, that in itself suggests action would be merited, regardless of how widespread the problem may be across the entire private sector.