KEIGHLEY MP Kris Hopkins is under fire after giving landlords the green light to kick out tenants on housing benefit.
Labour reacted with anger after Mr Hopkins, the housing minister, argued it was a “commercial decision” that any private landlord had the right to make.
He said: “If they actually decide they don’t want to have somebody on housing benefit in the future, that’s a perfectly legitimate thing for them to do.” The comment came after Panorama unearthed new figures revealing the number of evictions from privately-rented houses is rising sharply.
Emma Reynolds, Labour’s housing spokesman, described the attitude as “callous” when tenants were victims of a cost-of-living squeeze and a failure to build enough homes. She said: “It is appalling that David Cameron’s housing minister thinks it’s acceptable for someone to be evicted just because they are receiving social security.”
Speaking afterwards, Mr Hopkins stood by his comments, but added: “All landlords legally have to operate within the terms of their lease and every tenant must be treated fairly and without discrimination. The number of people in the private rented sector on housing benefit nationally has risen in the past two years, showing that landlords are letting to benefit claimants.”