We have written to Andy Burnham, the Greater Manchester Mayor and all local authorities and major housing associations across the region demanding that they take the lead and commit to ceasing all rental enforcement action in light of the current health crisis.
We have asked that that all GM local authorities and social housing providers urgently commit to:
1. Adjourn generally all possession claims or applications for warrants for eviction already issued at court; and
2. Suspend the issuing of any new possession proceedings, applications for warrants for eviction and Notices Seeking Possession.
It cannot be reasonable or proportionate to evict social housing tenants during the current crisis.
Tenants and their families are already facing unprecedented threats with regard to their own health, employment and ability to meet their own essential living needs, the fear that, in addition, they may lose the roof over their heads has to be removed.
Access to advice and legal representation is already extremely limited, as services close their doors to face to face advice and the capacity of the courts has to be preserved for the most urgent of cases where legal action is the only option.
Homelessness services are already overwhelmed. Preventing further evictions has to be everyone’s priority.
We are aware that some local authorities and housing associations have already made a commitment to supporting their tenants through this crisis by removing the threat of eviction.We are calling on all Greater Manchester local authorities and social housing providers to do the same.