Today’s Daily Telegraph reports that there are up to 6,000 people in social housing with an income greater than £100,000.
A range of options is now being considered to free up this housing, which ministers say is being kept from those in need. Grant Shapps, the Housing Minister, told The Daily Telegraph: “With so many people in housing need languishing on the waiting lists which doubled under Labour, it’s right to consider whether people on £100,000-plus salaries should get their rent subsidised by the taxpayer. Social housing is an expensive and scarce resource which should be targeted on supporting those in real need.”
The Conservatives use the example of Frank Dobson, the Labour MP who was still living in his council house, despite being a Cabinet
minister under Tony Blair and drawing a six-figure salary.
Bob Crow, the militant leader of the RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers), chooses to live in a council house in London despite his pay and perks package as union general secretary totalling more than £140,000. The rent is estimated to be around £150 a week – a figure that would be much higher in the private sector. His spokesman recently said that Mr Crow makes “no apology” for living in social housing.
Under the plans Mr Crow would be among those being asked to move out of social housing.