One such act is the Housing (Homeless Persons) Act of 1977, which included the controversial policy that if a person is found to be “ intentionally homeless” by a local authority, then that particular authority will not be deemed responsible for the re-housing of the person in question. Also, the act contained a policy that allowed local authorities to prioritize those who live in the local area. While all of this facilitates the exclusion by local authorities of those who seek housing, again it is arguable whether the notion to find people “ intentionally homeless” would actually be so rife if it were not for the superabundance of people who actually required housing stock.
A discussion of competing factors that have led to a rise in homelessness and how it equates to housing policy directly is essential at present because homelessness continues to be a massive problem in the UK. Whether housing policy has a direct impact upon homelessness is an issue that hasn’ t been looked at in this way before. While studies of homelessness and studies of housing policy have been conducted in isolation before, the question of whether housing policy directly impacts upon homelessness in a profound way or whether homelessness is the result of other cultural factors is, I believe, an important study to make because it directly affects the ways in which we view homelessness as a social problem, and sheds light upon the causes of homelessness and the possible solutions to this problem.
As such, in this dissertation, I will firstly look at the events prior to the Housing Act of 1980, both looking at acts that precipitated this act, and at why the 1980 Housing Act was so popular among tenants and among greater swathes of society at the time. Secondly, I will look at the direct impacts of the Housing Act of 1980; what this actually did to the state of housing in Britain, and at subsequent acts that were passed in the wake of the act. Thirdly, I will look at other political factors that were prevalent at the time, and look at whether more general economic, cultural, and demographic trends could be seen as contributing more significantly to the housing crises.
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