Letter: Evil waste of homes

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The Independent Culture
Sir: The Director of Shelter, Chris Holmes, rightly sees investment in new homes (Right of Reply, 18 November) as the primary tool to work on the homelessness scandal.

However, the London Borough of Camden has 470 empty flats of varying sizes, and the practice of owning empty property is rewarded by giving council tax concessions. The chair of the council's Housing Committee, Cllr Brian Weekes, told me recently that this is a necessary pool to facilitate council flat movements of 40 per week.

The wretched evil of homelessness will only begin to be solved when this nonsensical wastage is seen to be as socially unacceptable as drunken driving.

PETER RUTHERFORD

London NW6

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