Awaab's Law: Labour's Oliver Ryan backing Burnley Express petition to protect private tenants from toxic mould and damp

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"I 100% back" a campaign to protect private tenants from toxic mould and damp, says Labour's Parliamentary candidate for Burnley.

Oliver Ryan has thrown his weight behind a Burnley Express petition calling for the Government to extend Awaab’s Law to private tenants to ensure landlords urgently deal with these hazards.

His stance reflects a national pledge by the Labour Party to expand the legislation.

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"Decent housing is a fundamental part of people's lives, especially when you have children. It's difficult to keep a good home when it's collapsing around you. It's an important issue.

Oliver Ryan, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Burnley.Oliver Ryan, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Burnley.
Oliver Ryan, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Burnley.

"People in rented homes don't always tend to vote. So their voice is unheard and crap houses hold them back."

He reveals that at least 100 social and private tenants in the area have spoken to him so far this year about "suffering" from the effects of living with mould and damp.

"I'm a private tenant myself, and I have been for 10 years. There are good landlords and bad landlords. We find some horror stories around Burnley, Padiham, and Brierfield of people living with mould and damp and having problems with heating, vermin, and insulation.

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Woman adjusts a thermostat at her home as she limits her use of heating to keep up with her increasing energy bills. (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)Woman adjusts a thermostat at her home as she limits her use of heating to keep up with her increasing energy bills. (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)
Woman adjusts a thermostat at her home as she limits her use of heating to keep up with her increasing energy bills. (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images)

"It's serious.

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"You can tell people are suffering due to damp and mould, especially when they have children. They tell you they are depressed and can't get anyone to fix it. It's awful. It's horrible that people find themselves in that situation.

"When you get these horror stories from across the town, it makes you feel like you want to act. The law should be able to protect you.

"Lots of houses in Burnley, whether social or private, are around 150-years-old, especially terraces. If we want to make sure they are still there in another 150 years, we need significant investment, not just for current tenants but those in the future. I think we're in a housing crisis, and the single biggest problem in Burnley for too many people is the poor standard of homes. So we need to improve the existing stock and build new houses."

More than 36,000 people have signed the petition, and nearly 5,000 have shared it.

To sign it, head to https://chng.it/PcSYjXmX5z

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