An SNP MP has added his support to introducing rent controls in Scotland despite the SNP in Holyrood having voted down the proposed Fair Rents Bill.
Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton Constituency, has been a strong supporter of the proposed Fair Rents Bill as it will directly benefit many of her constituents living in the private rented sector. She has added her voice to the campaign to re-introduce the bill.
The proposed Fair Rents (Scotland) Bill was voted down by an alliance of SNP and Scottish Conservative MSPs who sit on the local government committee. The SNP and Tory MSPs said that there is not enough time to progress the bill further before the end of the parliamentary term next year. Given that there are 9 months before the dissolution of Parliament, Jackie believes this to be nonsense.
The bill was launched by Scottish Labour Housing Spokesperson Pauline McNeill MSP. Scottish Labour is calling on the Scottish Government to adopt the Bill itself, arguing that the Covid-19 pandemic has underlined the importance of protecting those who rent in the private sector.
With SNP elected members adding their support for the bill, pressure is mounting for the SNP to rethink its position.
Jackie Baillie MSP said:
“It’s clear that there is growing unease in the SNP about the party leadership’s refusal to support hard-pressed tenants. There is still time to save the Fair Rents Bill – but the SNP needs to re-consider its opposition.
“This bill would go a long way to support those who rent in the private sector. I am angry that the SNP and Tories worked hand in glove to deny protection to people. I hope that the SNP Government listen to the views of its own members and tells its MSPs to stop playing games and make sure that this bill is allowed to progress.”