Sussex

Photo ID plan for council tenants in Brighton

Brighton and Hove City Council building
Image caption The council wants to implement photographic tenant identification

Photo identification could become compulsory for council tenants in Brighton to prevent fraud.

The city council has put forward the idea after calls from tenants to stop the unlawful subletting of homes.

There were also concerns that council properties could be obtained or inherited by deception.

The authority said properties had to be fairly allocated and introducing the photo ID was one of the only ways to verify a tenant was legitimate.

A decision will be made by members of the council on 8 November.

'Outstrips supply'

Councillor Maria Caulfield, member for housing, said: "Only legitimate tenants should live in our homes because social housing is a precious resource that should be for those most in need of a home.

"It is also vital that council homes are allocated in a fair and transparent way because demand for council housing in the city massively outstrips supply."

She said each housing officer employed by the council was charged with checking up to 800 homes so photo ID would enable them to make sure tenants were rightfully in the properties.

Photos would be taken of tenants at application or tenancy sign-up and checked against other ID..

The authority said that tenants with religious or cultural reasons for not being photographed could be exempted but would have to provide additional identification when officers carried out visits.

The estimated £15,000 cost of implementing the scheme was being met by a government grant, the council added.

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