Shut down badly-run 'exempt' hostels and stop more opening in Birmingham hotspots

Shut down badly-run 'exempt' hostels and stop more opening in Birmingham hotspots

2 March 2022
Signatures: 955Next Goal: 1,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by Birmingham Live

Birmingham Live has united with residents, local politicians and police to ask Michael Gove, Minister for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, to take urgent action to stop more so-called 'exempt' homeless hostels and houses opening in neighbourhoods already full to bursting.

There are more than 8,200 properties now open in Birmingham, housing at least 22,000 vulnerable people from all around the country, many with complex needs. The number keeps rising, at a rate of around 25 new properties a week.

Many of them are well run and provide good support, carefully vetting tenants and helping them improve their lives.

But too many are not.

For those tenants, home is unsafe, with little support offered.

We know of rape victims housed with sex offenders, young care leavers sent to live with ex offenders just out of jail, people with serious mental illnesses abandoned, people newly clean of drugs housed with addicts.

Surrounding communities also pay the price - in fear, rubbish, anti social behaviour and crime.

Our city's MPs, council leaders, homeless charities, policing chiefs, good providers and resident groups have been pressing for action for a long time.

The Government has launched pilot projects to examine possible solutions. A select committee inquiry is taking place on the issue.

But all the while more exempt properties are opening up.

In Birmingham we can't wait any longer.

We want emergency measures introduced swiftly that mean our city can STOP any more exempt properties opening where too many already exist

We want a BAN on more individuals being housed in Birmingham ‘exempt’ properties who have no clear links to the area, except in crisis situations where they are fleeing danger.

We want our local councils to get more powers to CLAMP DOWN on badly run, unsafe accommodation

We also want more FUNDING for local authorities to inspect all exempt properties and enhanced housing benefit applications and shut down any that fail to meet quality standards.

We want local politicians to have the power to REJECT new exempt housing benefit claims in oversaturated streets and neighbourhoods.

And we want a clear, statutory DEFINITION of what 'care, support and supervision' must look like in exempt accommodation.

Please act now. Support our petition. 

Support now
Signatures: 955Next Goal: 1,000
Support now