Amoral landlords held to account
A BILL making it easier for tenants to act if their home is not up to standard cleared the Commons on Friday.
Local councils have powers to prosecute landlords who fail to carry out basic repairs. Yet this process can take time and is based on reaching a criminal standard of proof.
The new law will imply a term into residential leases allowing action to be taken in the civil courts, including against local councils who are landlords. The standards required of landlords stay the same.
This bill will not have any impact on most landlords who provide decent properties at reasonable prices, hence it was backed by the Residential Landlords Association and the National Landlord Association. Yet it is an additional method to deal with those who attempt to rent properties which do not even meet the most basic standard of being “fit for human habitation”.
RELIGIOUS FREEDOM DAY
October 27 is International Religious Freedom Day when people are encouraged to speak out for the right of all to freely choose their faith, with a debate held annually in Parliament to mark it.
There were excellent speeches from MPs of all parties during it, but one which stood out was that of Fabian Hamilton. His great-grandmother was murdered by the Nazis due to her Jewish faith.
During my speech I highlighted the bravery some show to follow their faith in the most oppressive conditions, including a secret church which met in the toilet of a North Korean labour camp.
North Korea tops the world watch list for persecution of Christians. Religious persecution going hand in hand with the repression of all other liberties in the Communist state.
The annual debate on its own will not change the situation in countries like North Korea, but if it inspires one person being persecuted for their faith to know others are thinking of their plight it is worth it.
FISHERIES BILL LAUNCHED
The EU’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) is loathed by many fishermen and as Brexit approaches the end of its application to UK waters is in sight.
Last week the Government launched its Fisheries Bill, the first in decades Parliament will consider without having to comply with the provisions of the CFP.
The bill looks to the time when the UK will exit the CFP and sets the legal basis for doing so.
The introduction of this bill marks a milestone as it is the second bill, following the Agriculture Bill, where the Government proposes significant changes in policy which can only happen after Brexit.
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