Geeta Kauldhar

party: Green Party
constituency: Wolverhampton South East

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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

Yes certainly a smart cap rent is essential if we are to curb excessive rent prices.

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

organisation: Open Rights Group (ORG)

Our current mass surveillance culture is inherently excessive, punitive and wrong. We as a party advocate a parliamentary enquiry into the scope of our current surveillance measures. We would also like the EU to take action on this issue and negotiate a data protection framework agreement for law enforcement between the EU and the US before considering future trade and security treaties. We also believe that the European Court of Human Rights should investigate as to whether intelligence services have been in breach of article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. We believe Edward Snowden is a whistleblower and should be granted political asylum in an EU member state of his choice.

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 housing should be of a decent liveable standard before being put out to rent and I would support enforced minimum standards.

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

organisation: Open Rights Group (ORG)

They certainly should not be restricted by private companies given that they are unelected bodies with, in the majority of cases, profit as their main priority and reason for existence. The state issue is somewhat more complex, however in principle the state should not have the ability to wield that type of power as it is likely to be abused.

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 Green Party have a fully costed Socially Rented Homes pledge. Under this we would raise the amount spent on house building to 6 billion a year by 2017 and so yes I would support an increase to 5 billion a year failing our policy coming to fruition.

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

organisation: Generation Rent

Yes they are certainly too high. The selling off of council housing and subsequent failure of consecutive governments to adequately build affordable socially rented homes has contributed to our current housing crisis. Our Buy To Let culture has led houses to become wealth generators rather than homes which has pushed house prices up. We need houses to function primarily as homes.

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

The Green Party have a fully costed Socially Rented Homes pledge. Under this we would scrap the mortgage interest tax allowance. By building more socially rented homes it also hoped more people would move in to these rather than staying in private rented homes reducing overall housing benefit claims. Given we are unlikely to get our policy into action I would support some form of rent tax that would recoup some of this money that could be put back into funding new housing.

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

organisation: CISTA

Yes, it is clear that in many cases our drug laws are based upon cultural values and norms rather than upon scientific research and knowledge. If one looks to the case of the dismissal of Professor Nut as a government advisor on Drug Policy it is clear we need to move toward an evidence based approach to Drug Policy.