A campaign group has emerged opposing Right to Rent legislation on the grounds that it is racist.
The group, Homes Not Borders has launched a campaigning website. The group initially launched on Twitter last October and is now threatening direct action.
Essentially agents and landlords now have to check the residential status, passports and documentation of all new tenants, and face penalties, including criminal sanctions, for letting to illegal immigrants.
The campaign group says it is made up of people who have been directly affected by the policy, and says it is intensifying discrimination of migrants.
They cite research from the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants into the pilot scheme in 2015 that found, 65% of landlords interviewed would be less likely to rent to someone who required a little time to provide documentation and 42% would be less likely to consider renting to someone who does not have a British passport.
More worryingly, 27% would be less likely to open discussions with someone who ‘had a name which doesn’t sound British’ or ‘had a foreign accent’.
A statement on the Homes Not Borders website said: “The ‘right to rent’ will only intensify the discrimination that migrants and people of colour face in their search for housing, exacerbating the housing crisis for particularly vulnerable communities.
“Homes Not Borders are building a movement to abolish the racist ‘right to rent’. As people directly affected by this policy, we are organising our communities through building relationships, developing bonds of solidarity work across the diverse, migrant, non-migrant, communities of colour. We will use all tools at our disposal including direct action.
“This racist ‘right to rent’ must challenged. It must be resisted. It must be abolished.”
“right to rent” makes migrants, or people who might be read as migrants, feel attacked, despised and under constant surveillance.
— Homes Not Borders (@homesnotborders) January 23, 2017