Response - Code of Guidance for Local Housing Authorities: Allocation of Accommodation

By: Jim Bennett  Published: August 2002


Shelter's response in August 2002 to the ODPM's draft Code of Guidance on the allocation of accommodation focused on the need for more clear and comprehensive guidance.

Summary

We welcome the fact that the new legislative framework is sufficiently flexible to enable local authorities to develop choice based approaches to lettings.

However in providing more permissive statute for local authorities there are a number of key areas where the Code of guidance needs to be more comprehensive.

Local authorities will need guidance on implementing the new framework in a way that is consistent with the Government's policy intentions. Yet there are some parts of the allocations framework that have been substantially changed by the Homelessness Act where the Code simply restates what is on the face of the Act and therefore provides no guidance at all. 

The Code of guidance needs to be made much more comprehensive in the following key areas:

  • unacceptable behaviour and eligibility
  • reasonable preference
  • determining priority
  • reviews.