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Centre for Social Justice calls on Remain and Leave campaigns to make their case to low income Britain

By Frank Young

“In or Out: what matters to cash strapped Brits”

Next week leading Brexit and Remain campaigners will make their case at a Centre for Social Justice referendum debate at The Sun newspaper.

Former Political Editor of the Sun, Trevor Kavanagh will Chair the debate, with Iain Duncan Smith and Andrea Leadsom for Leave and Charles Clarke and Owen Smith for Remain. They will square off to answer the question: “In or Out: what matters to cash strapped Brits”.

Too often this campaign has focused on political process.

None of this matters to low income families living far away from the Westminster bubble. It is time to take the battle buses across the UK including to our poorest communities.

As we reach the final fortnight of the referendum campaign, both Leave and Remain need to make their arguments directly to the millions of UK families living in our hard pressed communities and focus on the important issues that impact them.

More people than ever in slavery according to new Global Slavery Index

By Amelia Abplanalp

According to the 2016 Global Slavery Index released this week, more people than ever are living in slavery. The index identifies a shocking world-wide tally of 45.8 million slaves, up from 35.8 million in 2014.

The United Kingdom is a world leader in tackling slavery

Walk Free founder, Andrew Forrest said the UK is leading the world with its anti-slavery strategy. This is in large part due to the 2015 Modern Slavery Act, which has toughened prosecution laws and sentences for offenders and provided more support for victims of slavery.

The CSJ’s 2013 report, It Happens Here: Equipping the United Kingdom to fight modern slavery, sparked much of this progress and was fundamental in seeing slavery become a political priority.

Too many people are still in slavery in the UK

While the UK is among those countries doing the most to end slavery there are still 12,000 people estimated to be in slavery in this country. This is 12,000 too many.

The new anti-slavery laws are just the start in truly ending slavery once and for all.

With slavery thriving in too many European nations, the CSJ’s latest report, A Modern Response to Modern Slavery, looks at our how slavery should be tackled in every country in Europe, offering 40 practical recommendations including harmonised terminology, requirement for countries to obtain reliable data and holding law enforcement, borders and immigration officials to account.

CSJ report: A Modern Response to Modern Slavery
CSJ report: It Happens Here: Equipping the United Kingdom to fight modern slavery

A secure home is fundamental to the life chances of the poorest

By Hannah Gousy

Renting privately is rapidly becoming a new norm for the poorest households. Over the last decade, the number of low-income households in the private rented sector has doubled. 

In the latest contribution to this ongoing debate landlord groups have warned that recent tax changes will increase this trend.

In Home Improvements, our recent report on the private rented sector in the UK, we set out the impact of housing insecurity on our pooest families.

Without a stable base adults struggle to maintain employment. In damp, dangerous conditions parents cannot provide the right environment for their children to thrive and develop. Those who lack any home can find it challenging to get back on their feet.

Expanding Social Letting Agencies will help provide secure homes.

The CSJ believes creating a national network of Social Lettings Agencies is the way forward.

The Government recently announced changes to funding for Temporary Accommodation with an extra £40million set aside for local authorities. We have called on the Government to use this money to set up a Capital Fund to aid the expansion of Social Lettings Agencies.

These agencies manage properties on behalf of landlords and provide specialist support to tenants with issues such as benefit payments and budgeting. 

This combined with measures to extend standard tenancy length and improve conditions and affordability in the sector would greatly improve the options for tenants desperately in need of a secure, suitable home.

CSJ report: Home Improvements: A Social Justice Approach to Housing Policy