Scarborough council leader calls for eviction ban extension

Scarborough Council's leader has signed a letter sent to the Housing Secretary calling for an urgent extension of the ban on evictions, which is due to end on Sunday.

Cllr Steve Siddons has joined with Labour Metro Mayors, the Mayor of London and other council leaders from across England in signing the letter to Robert Jenrick MP.

The letter urges the government to fulfil its promise that "no renter who has lost income due to coronavirus will be forced out of their home".

Labour has called on the government to extend the ban, with Labour Leader Keir Starmer saying:

The Housing Charity Shelter estimates that nearly a quarter of a million people are at risk of eviction because of Covid economic impact.

A survey by Shelter found that 174,000 tenants had already been threatened with eviction during the pandemic. Credit: PA

Once the ban is lifted, under current law, anyone with two month's arrears can be automatically evicted through the courts.

The letter adds: "We have long been warning that current policies will lead to a wave of evictions and homelessness this winter, potentially coinciding with a rise in Covid-19 infections. But this crisis is avoidable if you act quickly and decisively.

"Together, as the elected representatives of millions of people across England, we are calling on you to urgently extend the ban on evictions, and make good on your promise, that no-one lose their home as a result of Covid.

"We look forward to your response. We will work with the government constructively to support everyone affected by this situation."

Landlords in England and Wales were banned in March from evicting tenants and repossessing properties following the outbreak of coronavirus.

A number of health bodies have also written to Mr Jenrick calling for an extension to the ban.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has been approached for comment.