Andrew Rosindell M.P. has introduced to Parliament legislation that would place strict limits on the ability of landlords to include “no pets” policies in rented accommodation.
As part of a 10 Minute Rule Bill, a type of Private Members’ Bill, the former Shadow Minister for Animal Welfare and Member of Parliament for Romford highlighted the frequently unjust way in which renters are forced to give up their beloved pets in order to move into new accommodation.
The legislation, backed by animal rights and animal welfare organisations, including the RSPCA and Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, will prevent landlords from banning “responsible owners” from bringing pets into rented accommodation.
Recognising the concerns that landlords have, the legislation will require renters to demonstrate they are “responsible owners” with a suggested checklist including a vet’s confirmation that their pet is vaccinated, spayed/neutered, free of parasites and responsive to basic training commands in the case of dogs. In cases where the renter can prove they are a “responsible owner”, and the accommodation is suitable for their pet, the right to take a pet into rented accommodation would be assumed.
The legislation is being called “Jasmine’s Law”, named after a dog which was separated from its owner, Jordan Adams, because of restrictions like these. He will also highlight the tragic case of John Chadwick, a homeless man who ended his life after the only housing option his local council provided him with was one which meant separating from his beloved pets.
Commenting, Andrew Rosindell M.P. said:
“I’m delighted to have secured this slot to speak about an issue deeply important to me. As a dog owner for twenty five years, I understand as well as anyone the connection a person can have with their pet and for too long I have heard tragic stories of pet owners separated from their pets because of blanket bans that landlords implement.
It is a huge opportunity to increase awareness of this issue and to pressure the government to make changes that they promised earlier this year. In January the Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick rightly called on landlords to make it easier for responsible tenants to have well behaved pets in their homes, but as of yet this hasn’t been followed by any legislation.”