DR UK responds to housing consultations

Wed,24 August 2022
News Housing

DR UK has responded to the government consultation "Improving disabled people's access to let residential premises: reasonable adjustments to common parts, a new duty", which can be read on the DR UK website, and submitted evidence for the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Renters Reform Bill.

We know that the law needs to change to improve Disabled people's access to housing, as only 9% of homes in the UK provide features that are accessible. And research shows that more than 400,000 wheelchair users in England live in homes that are not adapted for their needs. Inaccessibility of homes affects the daily lives of millions of Disabled people.

Disappointingly, neither the new Section 36 duty nor the Renter's Reform Bill will improve Disabled people's access to housing unless significant changes are made. We want to see accessibility of common areas be regularly reviewed and adaptations made to meet the needs of current and future residents. The Renter's Reform Bill has little action on the affordability crisis, and we worry about the proposed ombudsman removing legal recourse for renters.

Mikey Erhardt, at Disability Rights UK said, "We need to see new regulations that drive higher accessibility standards by requiring Landlords to adhere to the equality act.

As the Cost-of-Living Crisis worsens, the government must take action on the affordability emergency in housing across all tenures. Emergency measures are needed to protect tenants.

We are paying too much to live in dangerous, inaccessible homes, and the government must do more to shift the power imbalance away from landlords and toward Disabled tenants.”