Ex-forces personnel to get priority social housing in St Albans

FORMER armed services personnel are to be given greater priority in the allocation of council housing in the St Albans district.

The new ranking will be offered to qualifying ex-armed services personnel on their discharge from the armed services and during the two years after they have left.

Agreeing the change in policy at their meeting on Tuesday, the district council’s cabinet also decided that single qualifying ex-service personnel who are defined as homeless would be given higher priority for housing than previously.

The ruling is in line with the county council’s armed forces initiative which aims to prevent armed forces personnel being disadvantaged as a result of their military service.

Currently under the district council’s choice-based lettings scheme, housing applications are prioritised in a banding system which reflects an applicant’s housing need.

Previously, ex-armed forces personnel were not given additional priority because of military service but the decision means their application will get more preference as it will be backdated to include their time in the forces.