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Social Housing - Armed Forces

The Allocation of Housing (Qualification Criteria for Armed Forces)(England)cRegulations 2012 were laid before Parliament yesterday and comes into effect on 24[SUP]th[/SUP] August this year.

Local Authorities are now no longer able to use Section 199 Housing Act 1996 to deny certain categories of servicemen, dependents and Reservist access to social housing merely because they lack a ‘local connection’. (Article 3(2)(a)). It applies to England only.

This now finally puts an end to the appalling officially sanctioned discrimination of servicemen and their families who, due to death or injury in service were denied access to social housing simply because they could not prove some local connection in the area they chose to put down roots on their discharge.

It also vindicates the tireless efforts of a single Arrser ‘Hitback’ who, many will remember, embarked upon a relentless one-man campaign on this site over several years to achieve the outcome that Parliament has now recognized and given effect to.

Well done that man! (and those that supported him)


Yes it's welcome News. Locally, in North Devon there's been a Community Covenant partnership initiative "to identify opportunities to improve services in the County to meet the specific needs of Devon's armed forces community - ensuring military personnel and their families are not inadvertently disadvantaged". Hopefully this will include Housing and local authority policy.
I am on Redundancy Tranche 3 due to leave the Army in Jun 2014. Recently, I applied to register with Harrow Council's housing list. Unfortunately, They have sent me the following email that I do not qualify to be on the housing list:

"Thank you for your recent application to join Harrow Council's housing register (Locata). Unfortunately, due to a recent change to our allocations and lettings policy we are no longer accepting applications from outside of the borough.

One of the many changes included in the policy is 'exclusions'. People will not qualify for public rented housing in Harrow if they have not been continuously resident in the borough of Harrow for at least 5 years.

If you still wish to move to Harrow you would need to consider moving into private rented accommodation within the area. However, in order to be eligible to re-apply to us, the 5 years rule will still be upheld."

Does that rules also apply to Armed Forces? I need help to write a letter to appeal against their decision. Can anyone please tell me what points should I include on my letter. I am looking forward for your help and advice. Thanks in advance.
You need to check with Citizens Advice. From the OP, it looks like the new rule will come into force on 24 August this year. Therefore it would appear that you will have to wait until then before Harrow have to take you on board. Good Luck!
The 2012 Amendment Regulations are in force but the change only meant that the applicant could not be excluded simply because his "local connection" was by reason of military service, such as being resident in barracks.

If the OP can give me more detail by PM I would be happy to give it some thought later in the day. I agree about consulting Citizens' Advice and as Eodmatt says, Good Luck!

Currently on a device that will not open the link in the OP, does this change the rules about single personnel with a child and forces housing?
Need advice on how i can apply, Im the parent that has applied for child benerfit as was told its a loop hole for singles to get housing, Not sure how true that is.
Thanks in advance.
Good news for sure but in reality little will change - these is simply insufficient social housing to satisfy demand. I'd much rather we tackled the cause of the problem, one way being to break the current parent/child relationship that the Army maintains with its workforce. This negative relationship is particularly apparent in the over-provision of welfare support, and in this instance through the provision of service accommodation, when in reality we should be forcing independence, through incentives as necessary, at the earliest point post-enlistment.
Currently on a device that will not open the link in the OP, does this change the rules about single personnel with a child and forces housing?
Need advice on how i can apply, Im the parent that has applied for child benerfit as was told its a loop hole for singles to get housing, Not sure how true that is.
Thanks in advance.
If I understand your post correctly, you appear to be asking about Married Quarters (more correctly known as Service Family Accommodation). If this is the case, then JSP 464 Tri-Service Accommodation Regulations (TSARs) contains the info you need.
Thank you Joe, Thats what i need.
JSP464 said:
0301 Entitlement criteria. To be entitled to SFA Service personnel must be:
Aged 18 or over, have completed Phase 1 training and be serving on a regular engagement with the UK Armed Forces, or be a Full Commitment (FC) Reservist as defined in single Service instructions. For those personnel under 18 years of age the parent unit must accept responsibility for their behaviour until the 18th birthday.
In Personal status category (PStatCat) 1, 1C, 1S or 2 as defined in JSP 752, Chapter 1 Section 4.
JSP752 said:
... PStat Cat 2. Those in PStat Cat 2 will meet one of the following qualifying criteria:
(1) A member of the Services who has parental responsibility within the terms of the Children Act 1989 for a child(ren) and who satisfies all of the following conditions:

(a) Can properly be regarded as the centre and prime mover in the life of the child(ren).

(b) Provides a home where they normally live with the child(ren) except where unable to do so for reasons attributable to their service in the Services.

(c) Provides, where the child(ren) is unable to care for itself, a child carer who can look after the child(ren) during their absences attributable to their service in the Services. The child carer must not be the other natural parent of the child(ren). The other natural parent should normally only have staying access to the child(ren) for an aggregate of 56 days in any 12 month period. Staying access greater than this may render the Service person ineligible for PStat Cat 2 (these restrictions on access do not apply while on recognised Unaccompanied Duty).

(d) Accepts financial responsibility for the child(ren).

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