POLITICS

Landlord Ministers Leading Grenfell Fire Response Told To Resign Over Voting Record On Housing

Nick Hurd and Sajid Javid actually voted against making homes ‘fit for human habitation'.

20/06/2017 11:22 | Updated 20 June 2017

Landlord ministers who voted against making homes “fit for human habitation” should resign in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster, the Labour Party’s chairman has suggested. 

Ian Lavery said fire minister Nick Hurd and communities secretary Sajid Javid should be “looking in the mirror” and asking “am I fit for office?”. 

The two were among 72 Tory MPs - which were all registered as making more than £10,000 a year in income from a property they own - who voted against the Labour amendment to the Landlord and Tenant Act.

The amendment stipulated that private sector landlords must ensure homes are “fit for human habitation” in 2016. 

It comes after the death toll of the Kensington tragedy rose to 79 this week with cheap cladding thought to be behind the rapid spread of the blaze.  

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Fire Minister Nick Hurd will lead the response to the Grenfell Tower disaster but voted against making homes 'fit for human habitation'

The Conservatives, who defeated the amendment, said the demand would have pushed up rent for tenants as it placed an extra financial burden on landlords.  

Lavery said Hurd and Javid, who will play high-profile roles in the aftermath of the Kensington disaster, should consider their positions - even though passing the amendment would not have affected Grenfell Tower, because it was aimed at private landlords.

He said: “We live in one of the richest countries on the planet. Decent housing for all is a most modest demand. It’s a basic human right.   

“Seventy two Conservative MPs who benefit from renting accommodation voted against our amendment to make homes fit for human habitation, a basic right for their tenants.

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Ian Lavery said MPs who voted against making homes 'fit for human habitation' should consider standing down

“Quite frankly it beggars belief, it’s beyond comprehension; greed before decent habitable homes for those already struggling.

“And for these senior ministers, they need to explain openly and transparently why they don’t think it necessary to have decent habitable homes for those needing accommodation.

“I’d be looking in the mirror and asking myself some real simple questions about integrity and scruples. Am I fit for office?”

Laura Pidcock, the newly-elected MP for North West Durham, said property-letting MPs have a “conflict of interest” when it comes to voting on housing regulations for tenants and should not be allowed to vote on them.  

She said it left the door open for a “stitch up”, adding: “I think that anyone who is a landlord should not be able to vote on legislation affecting landlords, it is a complete conflict of interest.

“Of course they won’t vote for further protections for people in their homes and will try to get a way with as little regulation as possible, as they perceive that this will affect their profits. 

“The people of Grenfell Tower have had their concerns repeatedly ignored and it is part of our long history as working class people to have our concerns ignored.”

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Laura Pidcock says landlord MPs voting on housing regulation is a 'scandal'

Pidcock added the Grenfell Tower tragedy was a watershed moment for the UK, which could have wide-reaching implications for housing policy. 

She said: “Grenfell Tower symbolises the catastrophic failings of the housing system in this country: the failings of privatisation; subcontracting; the scandal of MPs who are also landlords being able to stitch up legislation to benefit their business.

“It shows our public services cut to the bone, understaffed and undervalued, and it shows the human cost of gentrification and typifies the underhand, government-led social cleansing of inner cities.”

HuffPost UK has approached Nick Hurd and Sajdi Javid for a comment. 

The 72 MPs who were registered as deriving income from property of over £10,000 a year and who voted against the law, were as follows:

Nigel Adams

Stuart Andrew

Victoria Atkins

Jake Berry

James Berry

Bob Blackman

Robert Buckland

Alun Cairns

David Cameron

Alex Chalk

James Cleverley

Geoffrey Clifton-Brown

Therese Coffey

Geoffrey Cox

Mims Davies

Philip Davies

Richard Drax

James Duddridge

Alan Duncan

Philip Dunne

Jane Ellison

George Eustice

Mike Freer

Richard Fuller

John Glen

Robert Goodwill

Chris Grayling

Dominic Grieve

Chris Heaton-Harris

Peter Heaton-Jones

George Hollingberry

Kevin Hollinrake

Philip Hollobone

Nick Hurd

Stewart Jackson

Margot James

Sajid Javid

Joseph Johnson

Simon Kirby (teller)

Greg Knight

Brandon Lewis

Julian Lewis

Craig Mackinlay

Tania Mathias

Karl McCartney

Anne Marie Morris

Sheryll Murray

Robert Neill

Sarah Newton (teller)

Jesse Norman

David Nuttall

Neil Parish

Owen Paterson

Rebecca Pow

Jeremy Quin

Jacob Rees-Mogg

Laurence Robertson

Julian Smith

Royston Smith

Mark Spencer

John Stevenson

Desmond Swayne

Derek Thomas

Anne-Marie Trevelyan

Andrew Turner

Shailesh Vara

Theresa Villiers

Ben Wallace

David Warburton

Craig Whittaker

John Whittingdale

Nadhim Zahawi

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