Open letter to Housing Associations and Managing Agents
In many cases, but certainly not all, your Housing Association/Managing Agent might be a victim of the building safety crisis as well. Where this is the case, we need them to unite, and it is important for them to show their support for the bill proposal. Please use the letter below to write to them, either as inspiration or copy it.
Dear Housing Association/Managing agent,
Please forward this letter to the CEO
We are writing to you about the building safety crisis gripping our country. As a Housing Association/ Managing Agent it is almost inevitable that you are affected in some form. We believe that in the background you are doing everything possible to shield residents from unaffordable costs relating to the remediation of buildings that are affected.
Many buildings will now have had an intrusive survey to establish fire safety problems. In many instances breaches of the building regulations at the time of construction will have been found and you are now locked in conversations with the developer in how to rectify these problems and who should pay for them. Government has left the industry to come to workable solutions to make buildings safe for residents, an unworkable situation, which leads to delays and potential litigation as to where liabilities falls.
We believe that the solution to this problem is the “Polluter Pays” bill. A solution brought forward by leaseholders affected. The principles and the idea behind the “Polluter Pays” Bill is based on the way government dealt with contaminated land via the Environmental Protection Act 1990. The duty would be put onto Local Authorities to determine if a building complied with Building Regulations at the time of construction. If this is not the case, a determination will be made as to who the responsible person(s) was for the breach and the liability for the cost of remediation would fall to them. These costs would include interim cost, such as waking watch or increased insurance.
The bill would take the financial strain from leaseholders and in many cases you as well.
We have already achieved widespread backing for our proposal but the more industry talk about their support for the Polluter Pays, the more pressure will build on government to implement. You might be aware that ARMA has already publicly backed our campaign.
We think that this is the way out of the current impasse for government, leaseholders and HA/MA alike and we therefore call on your support for this bill proposal. We are asking government to introduce this as part of the upcoming Building Safety Bill and if needed it could bring it forward as emergency legislation to speed up the release of money.
We would ask two actions from you, they are:
- Please write to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Michael Gove to support the scheme. (Correspondence@communities.gov.uk)
- Show support publicly for our proposal. Let your residents know you are on their side, they need it, the mental health effects, and the financial strain on them is incredible. Ask your residents to support us and write to their local MP. We have a template letter on our website here (https://buildingsafetycrisis.org/open-letter-to-mps/).
The time has come to finally end this crisis in an equitable way. You can find out more about the bill proposal on our website (https://buildingsafetycrisis.org/how-the-bill-works/). We would answer any of your queries happily, so please do contact us.
With kind regards,
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