It is with great pleasure that Caritas hosted Mike Kane MP for an evening of shared discussion on ‘Homelessness and housing – a Catholic social teaching perspective.’ on the 30th November at the Cathedral Centre, Salford. Mike Kane MP is the Member of Parliament for Wythenshawe and Sale East, and in October 2016 was appointed Shadow Minister for Education with responsibility for Schools.
Recently, he launched a new group with his Labour parliamentary colleagues called ‘Catholics for Labour’ aimed at those interested in exploring and applying the rich vein of Catholic Social Teaching to public policy, and those considering participating in public life in the future. Caritas came to know Mike when he approached us, along with our partners Revive and Caritas Shrewsbury, just over a year ago about the appalling conditions for asylum seekers in his constituency of Wythenshawe. Together, we formed a project that responded and is currently thriving under the leadership of Caritas Shrewsbury.
Today in Manchester, there are 2,000 in temporary accommodation and 52 families in Bed and Breakfasts. Affordable housing is urgently needed if this is to change. Caritas, and others, are all playing their part but if we are to succeed in freeing up unused properties and land for buildings, new and creative partnerships with housing associations might just be one good way forward.