In October last year Inside Housing fired the starting gun on the general election by running the sector’s first ‘hustings’ event in the countdown to May’s expected polling day.
At the time our chair for the event, the BBC’s home editor Mark Easton, was asked whether or not he thought that housing could become a key issue at the ballot box. He replied that, apart from house prices, he couldn’t see it happening. Housing was simply too complex an issue for politicians to turn to their advantage when compared with those perennial vote winners, health and education, he said.
Inside Housing is setting out to change all that. In partnership with the Chartered Institute of Housing we are today launching the House Proud campaign with the simple aim of showing just how important housing is in helping people live successful lives. Within the sector we all know that housing professionals work miracles which have a lasting impact on tenants and residents in much the same way as doctors and teachers do. This valuable work not only makes for better communities, it also makes life easier for those same doctors and teachers who have fewer patients to treat or more attentive pupils to teach. These links have long been known, but now is the time to shout about it.
In the run-up to the general election we will be highlighting this crucial work by housing professionals across seven key policy areas, including anti-social behaviour and unemployment as well as the key election battlegrounds of health and education.
If you have a story to tell, let us know. We will be adding hundreds of prospective MPs to our circulation to ensure that they know just how important our sector’s work is and how much money it can save in other areas of public expenditure - something politicians do understand .
We need your help to make a difference. That is why each week we will arm you with the hard statistics you need to prove to local politicians and their voters (aka your residents) just how important the work that you do is. Be persuasive and encourage people to sign our online petition; be proactive and let us know about your successes; but above all, be house proud.