Despite all of the attention immigration has garnered during the election campaign so far, there has been little, if any discussion of the relative merits of Right-to-Rent. However, the issue has been brought back to the fore by the Joint Council for Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI).
The JCWI has long criticized the Government’s policy as divisive and potentially leading to an increase in discrimination in the PRS. The Joint Council also produced its own evaluation of the policy as far back as 2015, with little impact on the direction of public policy.
That may be about to change; JCWI has written to the Home Office to call for a halt to the roll-out of the scheme of the Government’s Right-to-Rent scheme awaiting a full evaluation of its impact in England.
The Joint Council is threatening to take legal action if the Government continues to implement the policy, which is yet to expand beyond England.
Saira Grant, Chief Executive of JCWI, said: “In the face of clear evidence of discrimination under Right-to-Rent, the Government must show it is not acting illegally before it presses ahead with a rollout to the rest of the UK.
“This is a scheme that not only discriminates against BME Britons, foreign nationals and British nationals without passports – it imposes costs on landlords, agents and tenants too.
“In the absence of any clear plan to monitor its effects the Government must carry out a thorough review – until then, any extension to other parts of the UK would be premature, dangerous, and potentially illegal.”
JCWI is crowdfunding to cover its costs.
It is far from certain that this campaign will have the effect desired by the group, but they may find support from communities and governments in parts of the UK yet to be hit with these immigration checks.
More information about the JCWI and their work on Right-to_rent may be found here.