Tell the Scottish Government to Protect Tenants

Yesterday, the UK government announced a ban on all evictions in England during the coronavirus pandemic. [1] They also announced measures to help tenants who aren’t able to afford their rent. But so far, the Scottish government hasn't made the same commitments. [2]

We are calling on the Scottish Government to commit to two things: banning evictions during the pandemic, and granting all tenants affected by coronavirus a ‘rent-holiday’. [3]

The Scottish government’s response is really not up to the task. In France, all evictions have been suspended until end of May, workers who stay at home for homecare receive 90% of pay and workers who are temporarily laid off 84% of pay. Here we are told that “This is a time for all landlords – whether in the social or private sector – to be flexible and adaptable to their tenants “ The statement by Aileen Campbell then focuses on protecting landlords…! At times like this, we need to be protecting the most vulnerable in our society, and right now these are tenants not landlords. [4]

You can find their phone numbers below. It’s possible you’ll get through to one of their staff members or an answering machine, but it’s still important to send them a message. You could ask their staff member to pass it on, or you could leave a voicemail. Here are some things you can say to them when you get through:

  • Ask them to push for a ban on all evictions during the coronavirus pandemic
  • Say you also want them to stop tenants who aren’t able to work from being driven into poverty, and ask them to support a ‘rent holiday’ where tenants who are affected don’t have to pay rent for this period
  • You can say you think it’s unfair that while homeowners are being offered support, there’s nothing being promised for tenants
  • Mention that you are disappointed that the UK government are going further than the Scottish government, and that you don’t want tenants in Scotland to be left behind

 

Kevin Stewart MSP - SNP housing spokesperson - 0131 348 6382 

Pauline McNeil MSP - Labour housing spokesperson - 0131 348 6475

Graham Simpson MSP - Conservative housing spokesperson - 0131 348 6983 

Andy Wightman MSP - Green Party housing spokesperson - 0131 348 6367

Willie Rennie MSP - Liberal Democrat leader - 0131 348 5804

 

If you’d like to phone your own MSP, you can find all their contact details here: https://www.parliament.scot/ResearchBriefingsAndFactsheets/US37.12_MSP_Contact_Details.pdf

 

After the call, tweet about it saying: "I just called MSPs to demand they protect tenants, you can do it here https://www.livingrent.org/corona_msp #rentfreeze" This way, we can hold our elected politicians to account as they fail to deliver in this time of crisis.



Notes:

[1] UK Government: Complete ban on evictions and additional protection for renters:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/complete-ban-on-evictions-and-additional-protection-for-renters

[2] Glasgow Times: 'Rent holiday' calls for tenants affected by coronavirus as law change announced:

https://www.glasgowtimes.co.uk/news/18315799.calls-tenants-get-rent-holiday-law-change-plan-announced/

[3] Scottish Housing News: Thousands call for emergency protections for tenants during pandemic:

https://www.scottishhousingnews.com/article/thousands-call-for-emergency-protections-for-tenants-during-pandemic

[4] Scottish Communities Secretary Speech:

https://www.gov.scot/publications/supporting-communities-funding-statement/

38 Degrees: Protect tenants during coronavirus:

https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/protect-tenants-from-coronavirus