Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Landlord conference aims for more affordable high quality housing in Leeds

A conference to bring landlords from across Leeds together will take place at Pudsey Civic Hall this week (Thursday 21 November).

The conference, organised by Leeds City Council, will focus on how to bring affordable and high quality homes to the city and will engage with landlords on current issues affecting them as a sector.

The free event which will run from 9am to 2pm will include speeches from three key speakers – Councillor Peter Gruen, executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods, planning and support services at Leeds City Council, Hannah Gousy, policy officer from Shelter, and Alan Ward, chairman of the Residential Landlords Association (RLA). The main themes that will be covered on the day will involve policy, national and local issues, empty properties, and general private rented sector areas of concern.

After the speeches there will be a question and answer session followed by lunch and networking opportunities. There will be a number of stalls from key partners at the event, including West Yorkshire Fire Service, welfare and benefits team from Leeds City Council, Leeds Empties and Energy Efficiency advisory teams, Housing Options, Unipol, RLA and Leeds Landlord Accreditation Scheme.

There has already been a lot of interest in the event, and anyone wanting to register for the event should contact Rebecca.smith@leeds.gov.uk

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods, planning and support services said:

“This conference will allow us to bring the city’s landlords together to discuss issues currently affecting the sector and also the positives moving forward.

“We know how important the rented sector has become over recent years and we have real ambitions for the quality of the private sector, and the possibility offered to us through bringing empty properties back into use. This can only be achieved by real partnership and by working together.

“As a council we have spent £750m bringing our own homes up to decent homes standard and have a thriving Housing Association presence in the city. Yet we have parts of the private rented sector that provide accommodation below acceptable standards. The majority of our landlords are accredited and provide good quality homes but we want to ensure this reputation is not tarnished by others.

“These initiatives demonstrate that we have listened to landlord’s views, that we will take action to improve standards and that we will reduce the number of empty properties.”

Ends


For media enquiries, please contact;
Cat Milburn, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 247 4450
Email: Catherine.milburn@leeds.gov.uk

Conversations at the heart of this year’s Alcohol Awareness Week in Leeds

Leeds City Council are backing this year’s Alcohol Awareness Week, which runs from 18th – 24th November 2013, working with Alcohol Concern and other agencies to help people make sure they are aware of the impact alcohol has on their lives.

It is estimated Leeds has over 32,500 dependent drinkers and as part of the Leeds Health and Wellbeing Board’s announcement of their drug and alcohol strategy, the council is committed to reducing this figure, tackling not just the significant harm for people’s longer term health but the wider impact on the community too.

Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Chair of Leeds Health and Wellbeing Board, said:

“The aim of Alcohol Awareness Week is to encourage people to have the right conversations about alcohol and think about how it can affect us as individuals, families, communities and society. By doing this we can make positive changes to our relationship with alcohol.”

“It isn’t unusual to have a drink or two and most people enjoy some of the positive things about having a drink, unwinding and relaxing as a sociable and enjoyable part of meeting with friends for instance.

"The problem with alcohol is that sometimes one drink can very easily lead to another and before you know it, you might have drunk more than you intended.”

Dr Ian Cameron, Director of Public Health for Leeds, said:

“We know areas that spend less on alcohol tend to have a higher rate of alcohol hospital admissions, which suggests some people living in the more deprived areas are consuming larger amounts of cheaper alcohol, which in turn can cause alcohol related harm and increased hospital admissions.

“Alcohol is the second biggest risk factor for cancer after smoking, as well being associated with other medical conditions such as liver and heart disease. It is also a factor in many accidents. So we know risks to health aren’t just due to dependency. Being aware of what you drink and keeping to safe levels can make a huge difference to your health and your pocket.”

NHS advice on drinking recommends that men should not regularly drink more than 3-4 units a day and women should not regularly drink more than 2-3 units a day. The advice also recommends having at least two alcohol free days a week.

There is evidence that five minutes of structured advice is effective in reducing health risks from alcohol in 1 in 8 individuals. Support, more free information and advice is available at: www.leedsletschange.co.uk.
- Ends –


Issued by:

Phil Morcom
Communications and Marketing team
Leeds City Council, 4th Floor West, Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR

Mobile: 0772 227 5370
Tel: 0113 395 0393
Fax: 0113 247 4736
www.leeds.gov.uk

Notes to Editors:

More statistics and data about alcohol are available at: http://www.alcoholconcern.org.uk/campaign/statistics-on-alcohol

There are a number of local specialist alcohol services, including:

Addiction Dependency Solutions (ADS) is a community alcohol service offering advice, support and treatment for those affected by alcohol. Clients can self-refer by telephone, email or by dropping in.
A: 18 East Parade, Leeds, LS1 2BH.
T: (0113) 247 0111
E: leeds@ADSolutions.org.uk
W: www.ADSolutions.org.uk

Leeds Addiction Unit (LAU) is a citywide service for people presenting with complex issues associated with substance misuse. Such issues include severe and enduring mental illness, complex poly drug use, pregnant women, safeguarding issues etc.
A: 19 Springfield Mount, Leeds, LS2 9NG. Or can call directly to make an enquiry/appointment.
T: (0113) 855 9540
W: www.leedspft.nhs.uk/our_services/leeds_addiction_unit

Platform Young People’s Drug & Alcohol Service works with people under the age of 18 with the aim to help young people make informed and educated choices about their lifestyles.
A: 20 York Place
T: (0113) 397 1300
E: platformleeds@disc-vol.org.uk
W: www.platformleeds-online.org.uk


Leeds on the right road for safety

Latest figures have revealed that Leeds continues to be amongst the safest cities in the country for having the lowest number of people killed or seriously injured on its roads.

Annual statistics released by the Department for Transport show that the number of reported casualties of serious road accidents in Leeds in 2012 was again the lowest of all eight of the English ‘core cities’ outside London which include Birmingham, Bristol, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield.

Leeds has now reported the lowest casualty rate in terms of those killed or seriously injured for each of the last three years, and previously also had the lowest average for the years 2005 to 2009.

The 2012 figure in Leeds for the numbers of people reported killed or seriously injured per billion vehicle miles was 80, remaining largely at the same level over the last four years. This figure has reduced from 94 in 2008 and an average of 91 over the years 2005-09.

The figures have been highlighted to coincide with national Road Safety Week this week, raising awareness of the importance of road safety and the work being done by Leeds City Council and partner agencies to ensure roads are as safe as possible.

This work includes introducing engineering measures to improve road safety, changing the behaviour of road users through education and training and developing closer working relationships between all agencies with a focus on casualty reduction.

Leeds City Council executive member for the economy and development Councillor Richard Lewis said:

“We are very pleased that the statistics show Leeds continues to have the lowest number of road casualties as it is a reflection of the hard work being done by all agencies in Leeds to raise road and driving awareness and our efforts to make our roads as safe as possible.

“There is no room for complacency, however, as even one serious injury is too many so this vital work must continue in order for the figures to drop further.”

The full annual road safety statistics can be seen at the Department for Transport website at www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-transport

For information on road safety in Leeds go to www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/Pages/Road-safety.aspx


ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde,
Leeds City Council press office,
Tel 0113 247 5472
Email: roger.boyde@leeds.gov.uk