As I may have reminded you once or twice already (and no doubt will again), the second reading of Karen Buck MP’s Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation and Liability for Housing Standards) Bill is on 19 January 2018.
This is a private members bill. It is very rare for private bills to become law, mostly because of the limited time available for debate in Parliament. It makes it very easy for any single MP opposed to a Bill to ‘talk it out’, by taking up all the available time. You may recall that just that happened to version 1 of this Bill in 2015.
In order to prevent this at the second reading of the Bill, we need 100 MPs to be present. This is the number needed to force a vote, so that the Bill can’t be ‘talked out’ and can proceed.
Private Members Bills are debated on Fridays, when many MPs are not at Parliament. This means that MPs will have to be particularly encouraged to attend the second reading on 19 January 2018.
I’ve prepared a short briefing on the Bill, setting out why it is necessary and important, and what it does. Please feel free to use this and to circulate it around organisations and individuals.
Above all, please contact your MP to tell them why you think the Bill is needed and to ask them to attend on 19 January. If you aren’t sure, you can find your MP here.
Shelter are also running a petition in support of the Bill. You could sign that too…
I make no apology for going on about this. It is a relatively simple change to the law, but one that could have significant and lasting effects. It is too important to be allowed to be filibustered out. Some one million rented homes in England, social and private, have category 1 HHSRS hazards, amounting to a serious risk to health.