Dismay from Enfield politicians as ‘no fault’ eviction ban delays continue

Three borough MPs and the leader of Enfield Council have called on ministers to abolish Section 21 without further delay, reports James Cracknell

Feryal Clark (left) addressed Secretary of State Michael Gove (right) in the House of Commons
Feryal Clark (left) addressed Michael Gove (right) in the House of Commons

Local political leaders in Enfield have slammed the government for the latest delays to the long-promised ban on ‘no-fault’ evictions.

A second reading of the Renters Reform Bill took place earlier this week and, although it still contains provision for a ban on Section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions, the government has said it will be delayed until potentially lengthy reforms to the judicial system are completed.

The ban was included in the Conservative Party’s 2019 election manifesto as part of wider reforms to tenants’ rights, but last month the Dispatch revealed that nearly 500 Enfield families have been evicted using the Section 21 process in the time since a ban was first promised by the government.

Enfield has been facing an acute homelessness crisis over the past year, which has been exacerbated by soaring eviction rates – with the borough recently recording the highest number of ‘no fault’ evictions in London. Such evictions allow landlords to turf out tenants within two months even when they have not breached their contract.

All three borough MPs, plus Enfield Council leader Nesil Caliskan, have called on the government to abolish Section 21 without further delay.

Enfield North MP Feryal Clark was among the members to speak during the second reading of the Renters Reform Bill in the House of Commons earlier this week, when she shared a tragic story from her constituency.

The Labour MP said: “My constituents, Esther and Fred, lost their son two weeks ago in the most horrific of circumstances. The very week that they lost their son they were served a Section 21 notice, despite the landlord knowing their circumstances.

“What message does it send to renters like Esther and Fred that the government are yet again delaying the abolition of Section 21 evictions?”

In response, Secretary of State Michael Gove said he was “deeply sorry” to hear about the case and reiterated his support for a ban on ‘no fault’ evictions, pointing out that “this bill leads to the abolition of Section 21, and it does so in a way that I believe is right and proportionate”.

However, Gove later added: “I am absolutely committed to getting rid of Section 21, but it is important to recognise that in so doing we need to strengthen the provisions that landlords have in order to deal with those tenants who, for whatever reason, need to be evicted from their property.”

With no date set on the abolition of Section 21 and concerns that it won’t be implemented before the next general election, Cllr Caliskan said: “It’s a disgrace that the Conservatives have again failed to deliver on their four-year-old promise to protect renters by ending ‘no-fault’ evictions.

“Every year, hundreds of residents in Enfield are made homeless through no fault of their own. The Tories have chosen to be on the side of their party donors – landlords.

“In the absence of national leadership, Labour-run Enfield Council will continue to stand up for renters and will hold bad landlords to account.”

Edmonton MP Kate Osamor has described it as “disgraceful” that families in Enfield continue to be evicted at short notice, while Enfield Southgate MP Bambos Charalambous said the delays “have real-world consequences” but added he was pleased to see the Renters Reform Bill make progress through parliament.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has also expressed anger at delays to a ban on Section 21. He said: “For too long, landlords have been able to take advantage of exploitative no-fault evictions, which leave renters vulnerable, simply because the government refuses to act.”

No news is bad news 

Independent news outlets like ours – reporting for the community without rich backers – are under threat of closure, turning British towns into news deserts. 

The audiences they serve know less, understand less, and can do less. 

If our coverage has helped you understand our community a little bit better, please consider supporting us with a monthly, yearly or one-off donation. 

Choose the news. Don’t lose the news.

Monthly direct debit 

Annual direct debit

£5 per month supporters get a digital copy of each month’s paper before anyone else, £10 per month supporters get a digital copy of each month’s paper before anyone else and a print copy posted to them each month. £50 annual supporters get a digital copy of each month's paper before anyone else.  

Donate now with Pay Pal

More information on supporting us monthly or yearly 

More Information about donations