Group: Forum Members
I came out of prison and joined my loving family who were given a flat after being made homeless due to my incarceration.
The local housing department has been awful to my family and were ready to take our small children away rather than help my wife with the rent.
Anyway, that is a topic for another winter night.
Once I came out of prison I notified the local authorities and added my name to the online account, disclosing also that I had been convicted of a criminal offence.
This disclosure resulted in the whole family's request to stay/join the housing register to be suspended for at least 2 years from the day of our application.They refused us citing their policy:
The District Council Housing Allocations Policy is as follows:
“Duration of exclusion or ineligibility for unacceptable behaviour Where an applicant has been disqualified for inclusion on the housing register the sanction for unacceptable behaviour will normally last for a minimum period of 2 years from the date of conviction or the date of the last known disqualifying offence if not taken through the court process. After this time the applicant must be able to prove that the exclusion is no longer valid by evidencing changed behaviour or the conviction is spent.”
However, being guided by this policy, I am arguing that the date of my exclusion from the housing register starts at the date of my conviction which is in 2016 and not the date of my release from prison which is in 2019.
In their refusal letter they state that I cannot show evidence of changed behaviour whilst in prison.
I am trying to argue that I can I show evidence of good behaviour even while in prison. I had my PO sent them a report about me in an attempt to show my good behaviour and that more then two years have past since my conviction.
Therefore, they should add me to the housing register from the date of my application.
My question is: Does anyone have any experience or knowledge about such things?
I find it difficult to understand how they can prohibit people from joining the local housing register if convicted? What if I came out of prison homeless, leaving in the hostel? I would have had to spend at least two years leaving in the hostel before I could apply for housing!!!
Thank you for reading. Any help will be greatly appreciated.
Group: Awaiting Activation
I am afraid I can only offer my support and encouragement for you to maintain an ex-offender.
I am fortunate not to have been in your situation and so hope you will succeed.
However I would try and get the "free 15 minutes" with a solicitor to see if you can get legal aid to challenge the council. Or you could write to your local MP, visit his local office etc as especially at this time support for those who are or could possibly become homeless are high in the political agenda.
Good luck and keep strong
Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope is for tomorrow else what is left if you remove a mans hope.