The Health Secretary Matt Hancock has condemned ‘horrific examples’ of housing after ITV exposed two cases of Disabled people forced to live in housing with wet walls covered in black mold, one of whom has a serious breathing condition and another who has anxiety and lives with her small children.
The Health Secretary, Matt Hancock MP
10 million people are living in housing which is not fit for purpose, including many Disabled people.
Matt Hancock said it was up to landlords to deal with inadequate homes, but that it is up to Government “to make sure, frankly, there’s enough good quality housing.”
Health conditions caused by poor quality housing cost the NHS £1.4 billion every year.
Kamran Mallick, CEO Disability Rights UK
DR UK’s CEO Kamran Mallick said: “It’s good to hear the Health Secretary recognise how serious people’s living situations are. This is a deep rooted problem with some serious Catch 22s involved. People on waiting lists for social housing can be kicked off the list if they refuse housing knowing it will make them ill, if it doesn’t have the correct adaptations, or if it doesn’t come with a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan if they are on higher, inaccessible floors which put them at greater risk in case of fire.
“The Government is embarking on building programmes to fix the housing crisis with no improvement to M-Regs which determine the accessibility of properties. 10 million people are living in incredibly poor conditions now. That figure will only increase unless the Government takes a strong two-pronged approach to improvements: fixing housing stock which already exists, and ensuring that the houses of tomorrow are fit for whole life use, from cradle, through impairment, to grave.”