Islington MPs back revenge eviction bill - but Emily Thornberry misses debate

MP Emily Thornberry: 'I grew up on a council estate'

MP Emily Thornberry: 'I grew up on a council estate' - Credit: Archant

A bill to stop unscrupulous landlords turfing out tenants who complain has been backed by both Islington MP - but only one attended yesterday’s reading.

The Revenge Evictions Bill, introduced to Parliament by former Islington councillor Sarah Tether, is designed to stop people getting kicked out of their homes if they demand repairs or point out poor conditions.

Jeremy Corbyn, MP for Islington North, warned the House of Commons there is “social cleansing” going on in central London and its suburbs as people are forced to move away.

He added: “We need stability in our communities in London and that is best achieved by proper regulation of the private rented sector.”

Emily Thornberry, MP for Islington South and Finsbury, said she backed the bill but was unable to attend Friday’s debate as she was giving out prizes at Central Foundation boys School, in Cowper Street, Finsbury.

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She said: “The trouble is with this job you need five of you to do everything, I’d made a long standing promise to the school and I kept it.

“But I fully support the idea.”

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Ms Thornberry’s rival for the Islington South and Finsbury seat in next year’s election is former Islington Council leader Terry Stacy.

He said: “Stopping revenge eviction will also give local authorities the confidence to use their powers to tackle poor conditions in the private rented sector.

“It’s encouraging to see Jeremy Corbyn is supporting the bill and I urged our other MP, Emily Thornberry to turn up to support the bill on Friday, and put a stop to retaliatory eviction once and for all.”

Campbell Robb, chief executive of Islington-based homeless charity Shelter, said: “No family should have to live in a home that puts their health and well-being at risk, let alone face eviction just for asking their landlord to fix a problem.

“Yet every day, we hear from parents up and down the country living in fear that damp or gas and electrical hazards are putting their children in danger, but feeling powerless to do anything about it.

“This has to stop.”

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