Privatisation and the death of public housing (May 2020)

  • Privatisation and the death of public housing

  • By Stuart Hodkinson, published in Safe as Houses, on 18 May 2020.

  • Abstract:

    • This report gives an insight into the history of public housing in the UK, from its emergence as part of a wider collective resistance to its (possible) demise.

    • The report explains how public housing represented both the partial decommodification of shelter and the protection of residents’ health and safety through a wider system of building regulation and control.

    • Subsequently, these qualities - the paper argues - is what made public housing a target for privatisation and demunicipalisation policies

    • Privatiation and demuncipalisation policies have financialised housing and land for profit-seeking corporate interests, and resulted in the rolling back of building regulations and the rolling out of self-regulation, which has weakened building safety and residents’ ability to hold their landlords to account.

  • Keywords: UK, England, public housing, social housing, affordable housing, privatisation of housing, building regulations, financialisation of housing