Wendy Taylor

party: Liberal Democrats
constituency: Newcastle upon Tyne East

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How would you reform surveillance law, oversight and practice to respect the rights of law-abiding people?

organisation: Open Rights Group (ORG)

The Liberal Democrats want to introduce a “Digital Bill of Rights” after the 2015 election to give people more power over their data. This will protect us against blanket surveillance without affecting our ability to tackle emerging threats or target criminals. Our online behaviour should be treated with the same respect as our offline behaviour, and that is why I am glad that my party supports a “Digital Bill of Rights”.

The right of parents to remain with their children in hospital has been established for over forty years. How would you ensure carers of people with dementia are equally welcome in hospital?

organisation: John's Campaign

Liberal democrats would give the NHS a legal duty to identify carers and develop a Carer’s Passport scheme to inform carers of their rights in the NHS, like more flexible visiting hours, assert their role as expert partners in care and gain access to support people with dementia in hopsital.

Should people in Scotland and Northern Ireland have the same free speech protections from libel bullies as their neighbours in England and Wales?

organisation: English PEN

Yes

The standards of goods and services that are essential, such as food and water, are generally highly regulated. Do you support enforced minimum standards in housing as a precondition of a renting?

organisation: Generation Rent

Yes

Governments implement policies that directly and indirectly impact on house prices. Do you think house prices are too high?

organisation: Generation Rent

Yes

Private sector landlords receive over £27bn a year in housing benefit and tax breaks. Would you support a rent tax that recouped up to a third of this to fund new housing supply?

organisation: Generation Rent

I don't think a rent tax is the best way to fund new housing, but Liberal Democrats are committed to building at least 300,000 new homes each year.

To what degree should access to information on the internet be restricted by the state or private companies?

organisation: Open Rights Group (ORG)

As little as possible-only where it's vital for commercial or state protection

Would you support the creation of a Royal Commission to review Britain’s drug laws?

organisation: CISTA

Yes.

Britain spends £24 billion on housing benefit and less than £1.5 billion on building homes. Do you support an increase in the social housebuilding grant to £5 billion a year to build homes?

organisation: Generation Rent

The important issue is to make sure we increase housebuilding to at least 300,000 homes a year. We will create a ministerial taskforce on housing to oversee this task and provide the leadership that is needed to achieve it. We will give councils more financial flexibilities to build more homes themselves, as well as make more public sector land available for housebuilding.The grant would depend on what's needed to achieve this.

Recent polling show that people support rent control by a margin of nine to one. Do you support a rent control that limits rent rises between tenancies as well as during tenancies?

organisation: Generation Rent

Liberal Democrats are aware that a strong rental marlet is essential in the UK. Our policies on renting are aimed at dealing with rogue landlords & making it easier for young people to rent a property. We would not introduce rent controls, but would want to make sure that there is an adequate supply of good quality properties to let. The relevant proposals from our manifesto are:-

1)Improve protections against rogue landlords and encourage a new multi-year tenancy with an agreed inflation-linked annual rent increase built in.
2) Enable Local Authorities to operate licensing schemes for rental properties in areas where they believe it is needed.
3) Establish a voluntary register of rented property where either the landlord or the tenant can register the property, to improve enforcement and tax transparency.
4) Extend the use of Rent Repayment Orders to allow tenants to have their rent refunded when a property is found to contain serious risks to health, and withhold rent from landlords who have not carried out court-ordered improvements within a reasonable period of time.
5) Introduce a new Help to Rent scheme to provide tenancy deposit loans for all first-time renters under 30.