Briefing: Localism Bill - Report Stage and Third Reading

By: James Bevan  Published: May 2011

The Localism Bill will result in wide ranging changes to housing and planning, which represent a fundamental shift in policy to a more localised system. A number of these proposals are welcome yet Shelter has key concerns regarding some proposed measures, which were not addressed at Commons committee stage.


At a time when the housing safety net is needed more than ever, these reforms critically damage it by:

  • Undermining the legal duty towards homeless people
  • Removing security in social housing (reducing incentives to work)

The Government failed to address critical concerns at committee stage and Shelter wants to see these proposals removed from the Bill entirely or at the very least substantially reformed.


However, the Bill could also provide a vital opportunity to deliver much needed reforms by adding clauses to increase protection for tenants in the private rented sector (PRS).


The Bill could also be improved by helping to enable local people to fully engage in planning decisions and hold their local authority to account.


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