Southwark Council calls for ban on ‘no fault’ evictions

6 November 2019

The Government’s consultation on Section 21 (no fault) evictions has recently closed, and Southwark Council has submitted its response, in writing, to call for them to be banned. Our response echoed that of leading charities, Shelter and Crisis, in that S21s are significant cause of homelessness.

Those who become homeless when their landlords evict them come to our homelessness unit and contact charities for help. As a local authority it’s a fine line – we need to work with landlords to keep the private sector housing supply available, but we expect good standards, and that landlords play their part. 

Tenants in the private sector are vulnerable to being evicted at short notice, often with nowhere to go, and potentially have to find another deposit, making them at risk of becoming homeless. Families with children risk disruption to their children’s education when their home near their school is lost, or they are forced into temporary accommodation, a process which is of course extremely stressful for them. 

Councillor Kieron Williams, cabinet member for housing management and modernisation, said: “This is a law that urgently needs to be changed. Half of the evictions we are seeing by private landlords are in cases where the family has done nothing wrong. All too often this happens with the minimum of notice. With so many families now living in private rented homes, these evictions are having a devastating effect; uprooting children from their schools and families from their communities. There are of course many good landlords out there too so it is important we get the detail of this change right but it is also essential that families can rent stable, long-term homes, without the insecurity and fear of eviction through no fault of their own. Ending Section 21 notices is an essential part of that change and it can’t come soon enough.”

The Government launched its consultation on the abolition of Section 21 on Sunday 21 July 2019. The consultation closed in October. It’s unlikely that any changes will come into force before late 2020.

Page last updated: 06 November 2019

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