THE boss of a homelessness charity has slammed government social housing reforms as “yet another missed opportunity”.

Chief executive of Brighton Housing Trust (BHT) Andy Winter dismissed the latest proposals for new social housing laws, which have been published in a government White Paper three years on from the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

The Social Housing White Paper includes a charter for what tenants can expect from landlords on areas including safety, and ministers say it will make landlords more accountable.

But Mr Winter believes the proposals do not go far enough to provide investment in new homes for social renters.

Speaking at a conference on social housing last week, he warned the housing crisis is set to become “much, much worse”.

The Argus:

Mr Winter said: “The charter for social housing residents should really be called ‘An Apology for Repeated Policy and Regulatory Failures’.

“The failure to invest in homes with social rents is having devastating consequences. Homelessness is up, waiting lists are up and the hope of getting a truly affordable home is down.

“Government housing policy is failing and has been failing for many, many years.

“Until we invest in the building of homes with social rents, we won’t see even the beginning of the end to the housing crisis.”

Mr Winter believes the government’s Help To Buy scheme, which offers a loan to first-time buyers to get a property with a five per cent deposit, has only benefited “a chosen few”.

He said: “For others struggling with housing costs, Help To Buy has had an inflationary impact on already overheated housing prices. The scheme has been great for the volume house builders who are raking in their publicly subsidised Help To Buy profits.”

The Argus:

A spokeswoman for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said the Social Housing White Paper will bring “transformational change” and give social housing residents “ a much stronger voice”.

She said: “We’re increasing the supply of affordable housing in all parts of the country with the biggest single funding commitment to affordable housing in a decade.

“Our new £11.5 billion Affordable Homes Programme will deliver up to 180,000 new affordable homes, should economic conditions allow, with many available for social rent to help those in the greatest need.

“Our proposals to reform the planning system will bring in a new, simpler Infrastructure Levy that will deliver at least as much, if not more, on-site affordable housing than today.”