Housing strategy missing foundation for accessible housing - Merton CIL's Consultation Response
6th Oct 2021
Merton CIL has expressed concern about the lack of consideration of accessible housing in the Council’s consultation on its housing strategy which covers how new housing will be delivered in the borough.
‘There is no mention of the standards that new homes should meet for access or the targets the Council has for meeting those standards,’ says Merton CIL’s Policy and Strategy Manager, Michael Turner. ‘Without this it seems the strategy doesn't have a foundation to deliver accessible housing for Deaf and Disabled people.’
This is a particular concern as the Council has missed most of its targets for new accessible homes in the last three years for which figures are available. The target for 10% of new homes to be wheelchair accessible was missed between 2016 and 2018, and the target for 90% of new homes to meet a general access standard was missed in 2017 and 2018.
The targets have also been missed by most other London boroughs and London as a whole is missing the target.
Merton CIL’s response to the consultation calls for a clearer commitment to delivering accessible housing for Deaf and Disabled people. ‘It’s good to see the Council looking at what it can do deliver good quality housing that meets people’s needs, but we need to be clear about this meaning housing that is accessible for Deaf and Disabled people.’
The strategy also highlights the need for housing plans to link with other parts of the Council’s work including adult social care. Merton CIL would also like to see the Council commit to implementing the recommendations the Equality and Human Rights Commission made for local authorities to improve the housing situation of Deaf and Disabled people in 2018.  This would include improving the way Deaf and Disabled people are treated on the waiting list for social housing and making it easier to make adaptations.
You can read our consultation response here: