The future of social housing – what’s next?
The future of social housing – what’s next?

Last week we launched the final report of our commission on the future of social housing. I joined Shelter midway through the project. I was amazed to see the huge ambition and hard work our 16 independent commissioners and the team here put into it.

It’s also been great to see a sector work together so well. There has been a growing push for more social housing recently, from charities, the public, and industry bodies.

But we … Read more

Is the tide turning for social housing?
Is the tide turning for social housing?

Theresa May has often said fixing the housing crisis is her top domestic priority – no small feat for a government also tasked with delivering Brexit on a razor-thin majority. Some governments might have been tempted to leave housing in the ‘too difficult’ box, where it has been gathering dust for years.

But while we have yet to see the fundamental reforms and significant uptick in investment needed to get the country building genuinely affordable homes at scale again, May’s … Read more

Over a year since the Grenfell fire
Over a year since the Grenfell fire

Over a year later, we’re still supporting residents who survived the Grenfell Tower fire, and working to hold the authorities to account and leading the conversation on the future of social housing.

How we’ve helped

Immediately after the fire Shelter’s team of advisers, solicitors and volunteers offered expert housing advice and support. And we set up a new dedicated service.

We have so far helped 90 people from Grenfell Tower and 180 from the nearby community.

Stephanie, whose flat overlooks … Read more

33,000 people had their say on social housing. Sixteen will ensure they're heard. One of them shares his view on how.
33,000 people had their say on social housing. Sixteen will ensure they're heard. One of them shares his view on how.

Guest blog by Rob Gershon 

I’ve just got home from the third meeting of the Shelter commission on the future of social housing, and I’m trying to sift through the information we’ve discussed today and my thoughts and feelings about it, so that I can try and summarise where the commission has come from, where it is, and where it might be going.

This isn’t quite as simple as it sounds. From the outset, the commission’s meetings haven’t been minuted … Read more

The full extent of the homelessness crisis
The full extent of the homelessness crisis
New homelessness figures

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) recently released new figures on homelessness, marking the last release of the current version of the homelessness statistics. With the introduction of the Homelessness Reduction Act in April 2018, the information local authorities collect about households, and the way this information is presented, will change.

The current statistics are the most important source of information about households and families found to be homeless. They tell us what kinds … Read more

Grenfell: One year on
Grenfell: One year on

It’s been a year since 72 people tragically lost their lives in the Grenfell Tower Fire.

Since then, what progress has been made to support the survivors and make sure nothing like this ever happens again? I’m a Shelter housing advisor, and I’ve been working in the area since it happened – supporting many of those who were affected by the fire to find a new home.

Has everyone from the tower been rehoused?

Some 210 families who lived in … Read more

Pride versus stigma in social housing as the Big Conversation gets underway
Pride versus stigma in social housing as the Big Conversation gets underway

This week, the commissioners who are leading Shelter’s Big Conversation into the future of social housing met for the second time. They reviewed the evidence that’s begun to come in– including interim findings from interviews with social tenants – and started to sketch out the direction their recommendations will take.

It was a wide-ranging discussion and we’re excited about the ambition of the commissioners. They met with survivors and bereaved people from Grenfell earlier this month, and the message they … Read more

‘We’re so grateful for it, but it’s only temporary.’ Laura’s story
‘We’re so grateful for it, but it’s only temporary.’ Laura’s story

According to a YouGov survey of 3,978 private renters, one in six private renters say that they have had a pest or vermin infestation in the last year. We spoke to Laura about her experience:

I work full-time, and support my family – my husband, our five children, and my mother.

‘We privately rented a flat for three years. It was in poor condition and we’d had various disagreements with the landlord over repairs and rent increases, including an ant … Read more

Shelter launches call for evidence on social housing
Shelter launches call for evidence on social housing

In early March, we saw the first meeting of the commissioners who will be steering our Big Conversation looking at the future of social housing.

We’ve promised the commissioners that we’ll keep the content of their meetings confidential, so that they have the space to debate and deliberate. But suffice to say we were really pleased with the enthusiasm in the room.

We’ve deliberately drawn our commissioners from a broad range of political persuasions and backgrounds, but they all stressed … Read more

On International Women’s Day, we mustn't ignore homeless women
On International Women’s Day, we mustn't ignore homeless women

International Women’s Day is a day to remember how badly women are being affected by our housing crisis.

While most people, when thinking about homelessness, might think of street homeless men, it’s important that we’re fully aware of the facts.

Women sleeping on the streets

It’s true that the majority of people captured by homeless street counts are men. Government data shows that only 14% of people sleeping on our streets on a given night are women.

But the women … Read more

Shelter’s Big Conversation on the future of social housing

The Grenfell fire not only left an indelible mark on the community of North Kensington, but also sent shockwaves through the rest of the country. It’s notable that the fire quickly became viewed not just as a terrible, avoidable tragedy, but also indicative of broader concerns about inequality and poor housing.

The public debate after the fire quickly centred on the allegation that residents’ concerns had been ignored. This led to the suspicion that people living in social housing were … Read more