Wrong to Buy

Peter Wilby – First Thoughts – New Statesman – 17-23 April 2015

The Right to Buy – allowing tenants to purchase at a discount council houses and now, under Cameron’s proposals, housing association properties – is another terrible Tory policy. For many years, almost everyone applauded Margaret Thatcher’s original scheme. Only three decades later can we see the full consequences. More than a third of ex-council homes in London are in the hands of private landlords who are, in effect, subsidised by the state through housing credits that help tenants pay the inflated rents – a supreme example of privatisation that leaves both consumers and taxpayers worse off. Private tenants have no rights even to carry on renting beyond a few months, let alone a right to buy. When you hear Tories praising the policy, agree and say you like right-to-buy so much you think it should be extended to the private sector. Then sit back while they try to explain why that wouldn’t be a good idea.



Animals and Autism

I have just listened to this fascinating item on today’s Woman’s Hour:

When Fraser met Billy the Cat

We talk to the mother whose autistic child found happiness and calm through his relationship with a rescue cat called Billy. Fraser’s tantrums and anxieties were overwhelming. His daily life was chaotic and normal daily events like mealtimes or bedtimes could trigger a meltdown. But with the cat by his side her son would immediately calm down. His mum Louise Booth tells Jenni how the presence of the cat has transformed all their lives.


If you are interested and have the opportunity, you can find this on BBC Radio i-player.


One of the many benefits of working at Boz’s Gaff is that I get the opportunity to listen to Woman’s Hour.