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Eviction always a last resort says Douglas housing chair

Mon, 29 Apr 2019

The chair of Douglas Council’s housing committee insists evicting tenants is always a ‘last resort’.
Councillor Claire Wells says every effort is made to contact a person who is in rent arrears before legal action is taken, but as a housing provider, support can only extend so far.
It comes after the plight of an evicted tenant, who’s since passed away, was highlighted in the ‘Graih Gazette’, a newsletter issued by the homelessness charity.
The article, written by Graih founder Michael Manning, details the circumstances surrounding the eviction of council tenant Ross Ward.
Though unable to comment on specific cases, Mrs Wells outlined the process of eviction, and what support is available.
She says the vulnerability of tenants is taken into account by the Council, and housing officers will direct those in need to social services.
Missed payment of weekly rent is flagged up immediately by the authority, with letters sent the week after and phone-calls made.
Mrs Wells says a lot of work goes into speaking with the tenants to see what help can be provided to sort out their debt before eviction is considered.
However, the councillor says there is a limit to what can be done if tenants don’t respond to communication.
She adds sometimes special payment plans are set up, but there’s only so many ‘fixes’ that can be put in place, and if a person is unable or unwilling to fulfil a tenancy agreement, the Council has to act.
Mrs Wells explained the eviction process to Local Democracy Reporter Ewan Gawne:


  • Claire Wells on eviction process


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