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Looking forward: housing policies for the future in Newcastle and Tyneside

Labour Housing Group members in Newcastle have organised a discussion ‘Looking forward: housing policies for the future’ on Tuesday 21st June 2011 at 7.30pm at Civic Centre, Newcastle.  If you are interested in attending please contact Sheila Spencer at
Now that Labour has taken back control of the City Council, what should our detailed housing policies be? What are the key problems we need to solve, and what are the most urgent tasks for our new Cabinet? How can we best meet housing need and avert the housing crisis being brought about by the policies of the Tory-led Coalition Government? What do we need to do differently, either from the Lib Dem Council or from our own last period in office?
This meeting will provide a chance to discuss our policy direction with Cllr Helen McStravick, the Deputy Cabinet Member for Housing, and with Steve Hilditch.  
Key questions we might discuss at the meeting include:
How can we build more houses, not just for owner-occupiers but social housing for people who want to rent as well?
What should our stance be on flexible tenures being introduced by the Government?
How do we maintain the progress that has been made on tackling and preventing homelessness, particularly in the light of the current welfare “reforms”?
What role should we expect Your Homes Newcastle to play in the future, not just as a provider but as a developer and more?
How can we ensure there is money to fund refurbishment of houses and flats, and avoid the planned demolition of much-needed housing?
How can we marry up regeneration and housing policies rather better?
What needs to be done about the Private Rented Sector to ensure better quality of stock and management, better access to the sector for households in need, and better linkage with other sectors?
What should our policies towards student housing be?
What do we need to do to reduce numbers of empty properties?
How can we work more effectively with housing providers (housing associations and others)?
How should the Council be engaging with tenants?
What could we do to campaign against the worst of the Government’s housing policies, and to campaign for positive change?
These and other discussion points could help us to shape a response to the Labour Party’s Housing Review as well as help to inform the policies of the City Council.
The meeting will also serve as an inaugural meeting of a Tyneside group of the Labour Housing Group.
If you are interested in attending the meeting, please contact Sheila Spencer    or    0191 265 2425