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HOMELESS TO LOSE WAITING LIST ADVANTAGE

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Homeless people will lose their right to get permanent council housing before other prospective tenants, according ...
Homeless people will lose their right to get permanent council housing before other prospective tenants, according to changes in housing legislation to be introduced in the Queen's Speech next month.

Councils will instead have a duty to provide the homeless with temporary accommodation for one year.

Chartered Institute of Housing chief executive Christine Laird said the proposals 'condemn families and individuals to a revolving door of short-term lets in variable accommodation'.

According to a housing bill due to go through Parliament next session, the homeless will be put on the same waiting list as other prospective council tenants. The government hopes this will discourage people who claim to be homeless as a quick route into housing.

On the single register the homeless will only have a right to 'reasonable preference'. This places them in the same priority group as those with insecure tenure and those living in unsanitary, overcrowded or otherwise unsatisfactory conditions.

The criteria for priority applicants is undecided, but does not yet include single parents or victims of domestic violence. Overriding consideration will be given to people with physical and learning disabilities.

Councils will only be able to offer temporary housing for maximum of two years in every three.

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