Nurses at Royal College of Nursing have called for a campaign to call for rent controls in order to improve housing and therefore health.
A resolution called for the RCN to lobby the UK governments to introduce rent controls.
The final resolution of the day and also this year’s congress, it was submitted by the Lothian branch and was presented to delegates by Geoff Earl.
The branch highlighted housing as “one of the major determinants of health”. But it warned that rent increases have outstripped both inflation and average earnings growth.
“The quality of housing impacts on health, as does tenure, with private occupiers usually exhibiting better health than renters,” it stated.
It argued that rent regulation could improve the wellbeing of vulnerable households by increasing the amount of money available to spend on other items such as food and clothing.
Regulation could include how initial rents and charges are determined, the extent of security of tenure available to tenants and the impact this has on landlords’ property rights, and mechanisms by which these regulations are enforced.
As well as a general discussion on poor housing and its impact on health, the debate saw a number a number of student members highlight their difficulties in finding decent accommodation.
The resolution was carried, though there were 39 abstainers and 41 votes against.
That this meeting of congress calls on RCN council to lobby governments of the UK to introduce rent controls