Cover of Foxes have holes


Foxes Have Holes: a Christian response to the housing crisis

Published in 2016 by Ekklesia, edited by Andrew Francis and Trisha Dale, Foxes Have Holes includes chapters by Rt Rev David Walker (Bishop of Manchester), Sean Gardiner, Chris Horton, Helen Roe, Helen Woolley, Raymond Young, Paul Lusk and Andrew Francis.

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Public discussion of housing is shot through with propaganda, wilful ignorance and the subordination of evidence to political myth. Truth can free us from myth, but only if we can first acknowledge the stake which most of us (including this writer and the majority of voters) have in its construction. This may be painful but, like neglectful and selfish parents everywhere, we owe the younger generation an explanation of the mess we are leaving them to live with ...

The housing crisis is first and foremost one of distribution. It arises from post-war welfare housing policies which determined that ‘social rights’ would endow generations with property rights extending through life and beyond. Now, in a sample set of ten households, three are home owners paying nothing; another three are owners paying relatively little compared with income and property value; another three have their housing costs met partly or wholly by the state through benefit and rent regulation; and one pays the full market rent. That last one is likely to be a young worker in a middle income bracket. Those with free or cheap housing consume more than they need. In the long transition to post-welfare housing, supply pressure is displaced especially onto market rent payers. Their number will grow.

From: For Richer, For Richer by Paul Lusk in Foxes Have Holes