Govan Law Centre is supporting the proposed Fair Rents (Scotland) Bill, a private members bill being proposed by Pauline McNeill MSP and Richard Leonard MSP.
The Bill is named after Mary Barbour from Govan, who was a central figure in the Glasgow rent strikes in 1915. There is a statue of Mary Barbour’s in Govan to commemorate her achievements. (pictured)
Mary Barbour formed “Mrs Barbour’s Army” – an eviction resistance group of mostly women. She lead 20,000 people through Glasgow to campaign for fair rents in the city.
The proposed bill would cap annual private sector rent increases across Scotland at one percentage point above inflation.
It would expand the landlord registration scheme, ensuring landlords update the register to include changes in what they charge for rent, building up a picture of market rates.
And when a tenant appeals the cost of rent amount, officers and members of the tribunal would be able to lower or maintain the rent, depending on their assessment However, unlike at present, they would not be allowed to raise costs.
Lorna Walker, GLC senior solicitor : “Govan Law Centre absolutely support the Mary Barbour Bill. Every day we see people who have been exploited in the private rented sector. It is essential for us that these proposals are put in place to try and regulate the private rented sector.”
Pauline McNeill and her party leader Richard Leonard are working to get cross-party support for the bill.