Shelter’s Head of Research misled public on TV

Shelter’s Head of Research misled public on TV

17:30 PM, 15th October 2018, About 6 years ago 59

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Last Thursday Hilary Burkitt, the Head of Research at Shelter, spoke about the PRS on the BBC’s Politics Live programme, about 22 minutes from the start. click here

She said “people don’t have the stability at the moment, they can be chucked out by their landlords at a moment’s notice”.

That is untrue. Shelter’s own website says the opposite: “Only court bailiffs can evict you from your home” click here

What she described would be a criminal offence, as Shelter’s website explains. click here

It is not surprising that tenants feel insecure when they hear deliberately misleading information like this from someone apparently knowledgeable.

Burkitt also said “We know now that losing a tenancy in the private rented sector is the leading cause of people becoming homeless in this country”. Shelter’s website says this is also untrue.

Firstly, it explains that the termination of a tenancy is not the cause of homelessness. The cause is whatever triggered the eviction: click here

Secondly, since June 2017 it has been showing the real reason: “The inability to find a new place to live once a short term tenancy ends is a leading cause of homelessness in Great Britain. New research by Shelter identifies a number of reasons why people on low incomes are increasingly unable to find a home and secure a tenancy in the private rented here

You would expect the Head of Research to be familiar with the results of this research, wouldn’t you?

Shelter has a rule on its website about: “never deliberately misleading or confusing a member of the publicclick here

Unfortunately this only applies to face-to-face fundraisers.  Shelter’s managers seem to have carte blanche on television programmes to spout propaganda which is given the lie by Shelter’s own body of knowledge and research.

“Does the truth not matter to Shelter?” Click here

“Shelter CEO is also confused about no-fault evictions” Click Here

Shelter is morally bankrupt: Click here

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20:02 PM, 15th October 2018, About 6 years ago

I am hoping that this new landlord association, will contact the BBC or whoever in the future and point out the errors in the statements and provide a more fact based account.

Larry Sweeney

20:28 PM, 15th October 2018, About 6 years ago

Please AJ, do not be in any doubt. We are going after Shelter. To bring everybody up to speed, we are busy sorting pledges. The numbers are vital and we have had 30k reads, so i say to those who have not pledged. Do so. It is grossly unfair to expect all those great landlords who have pledged to carry the load. Stop burying your head in the sand. The PRS is under sustained attack and if the existing organisations with their type of lobbying were successful, there would be no need for us. If they were successful we would not have Sect24, licensing etc. They however are not getting the job done.
Back to the substantial point. We have a nice surprise in store for Shelter. I cannot elaborate but this surprise is in train.

Old Mrs Landlord

0:15 AM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

It is also important to note that in fact Shelter uses the term "homelessness" to refer to statutory homelessness, ie those who are accepted as homeless and qualifying for accommodation by their local council. This conveniently excludes the numbers made homeless by eviction from social housing, which exceed those evicted from the PRS. This deception underlies Shelter's claim, frequently repeated in the media, that S.21 is the biggest proximate cause of homelessness.
In the thread about Shelter bullying and single mothers Dale Roberts relates his experience of hassle and losses caused by a tenant on benefits which I'm sure has a familiar ring for many of us. This story alone gives the lie to Shelter's claim that landlords make just as much money from tenants on benefits as from tenants who pay their own way. In the town where our properties are situated the LHA rate is over £100 a month below market rents and I understand there are even greater disparities elsewhere. Surely the fact that LHA rates are frozen at what was the 30th percentile several years ago makes it obvious that renting to someone on benefits means accepting a lower than average rent for the area, so how can Shelter argue this is not the case? Gullible, lazy journalists, all too ready to believe the myth of greedy, tax-dodging landlords accept this at face value and the public in general believe it.

Larry Sweeney

1:13 AM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

Yes Old Mrs Landlord. We must alter the narritive. Have you pledged?

John MacAlevey

10:11 AM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

It`s incumbent upon the BBC interviewer to have basic tenure is their job!
“people don’t have the stability at the moment, they can be chucked out by their landlords at a moment’s notice”
This untrue statement should have been challenged immediately..tells me more about the BBC & their bias.


10:17 AM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by John MacAlevey at 16/10/2018 - 10:11The only way to stop Shelter is to hit their funding. A proper campaign is required to persuade councillors and MP's together with the general public that the money provided is wasted and could be put to much better use. I am sure that most people do not realise the size of the organisation and the amount of money involved, nor what is (not) achieved with so much money.


10:41 AM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

Re homelessness. How many times must I say this. People always miss the true reason for increased homelessness. " Housing benefit paid direct to tenant = not paid on to L/Lord = eviction = homelessness" simple! We must ALL e-mail the BBC and e-mail "you know who" and put them right,

John MacAlevey

10:54 AM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Rod at 16/10/2018 - 10:41
About seven years ago my local authority said the following to me..`you must treat HB claimants as if they are in work`
In other words claimants are to be trained in money the expense of landlords.
What happened? addictions were fed, the dog was fed, the local off licence was fed..but the landlord lost out.
When challenged some years later, when it was clear the system was chronically broken, the local authority denied this phrase even though a senior housing office said it. HB must be paid to landlords direct as banks et al do not care..they want their money on the dot.

Anne Nixon

12:10 PM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

The constant drip drip drip of disinformation and invective against LLs is getting beyond a joke - how can anyone consider it as fair, even the culprits?

Am wondering whether it would be tolerated if it were aimed at any other sector of society?

Not only is it totally unfair it is also totally unprofessional of those spouting such lies AND those who giving them the exposure, in this case the BBC.

As a conscientious and kind person of integrity who happens also to be a landlord I find the whole thing very, very depressing.

Martin Roberts

12:38 PM, 16th October 2018, About 6 years ago

Maybe we should all phone Shelter's off ice and ask for 'clarification'.

I'm sure they would welcome the calls.

For the record, we're selling as I can only see things getting far worse.

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