Welsh Labour MP Chris Elmore will today call on the UK Government to initiate an independent inquiry into historic cavity wall insulation complaints, calling it a “scandal on the scale of PPI”.
The MP will reveal how a potential 3 million victims could have been affected by inappropriately or inadequately fitted cavity wall insulation after thousands of private companies took advantage of successive government green energy schemes.
During Monday’s Adjournment Debate in Parliament, the Ogmore MP will condemn the large number of companies involved in the scandal which have been “phoenixed” into new businesses. He will criticise the actions of Miller Pattison in particular, whose assets are believed to have been folded into Novora Building Services Limited to avoid paying compensation to his constituent, Gavin Ward, and potentially countless others.
Speaking ahead of the debate, Welsh Labour MP for Ogmore, Chris Elmore, said:
“The victims of the cavity wall insulation scandal have been voiceless for far too long. Some of these people’s homes are now uninhabitable, their health has deteriorated, and their lives have been put on hold. And all because they agreed to have cavity wall insulation fitted.
“Companies have phoenixed into new companies to avoid giving the people they have wronged the redress they deserve. The fact that the agency set up to guarantee their works isn’t fit for purpose just adds to their plight.
“It’s time the UK Government opened an independent inquiry into historic complaints to ensure that those who have been taken advantage of through a government-backed scheme get the justice they deserve.
“With a potential victim pool of 3 million people, this scandal could be as big as PPI. It’s time ministers treated it that way.”
It is now widely understood that many companies fitted cavity wall insulation on properties which were at particular risk of issues such as wind-blown rain or by using poor building practices. In many cases, this has caused severe damp incursion which can actually decrease the energy efficiency of a property, as well as giving rise to structural damage and increasing the risk of respiratory illnesses for inhabitants.
The Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency (CIGA) which guarantees many properties which had cavity wall insulation fitted has been widely criticised in recent years for ducking their responsibility to the homeowners affected.
Chris will call the scandal a symptom of the “gross inequality” across the UK, given that a large amount of the people who signed up to such schemes were in receipt of benefits.
At the end of his speech, Chris will ask the UK Government to:
- Set up an independent inquiry into historic cavity wall insulation complaints to determine the scale of the problem and seek resolution for those affected
- Allocate more resources to CIGA and allow them to issue compensation where appropriate
- Failing this, to set up a new, independent body to oversee cavity wall insulation complaints and compensate people where injustices can be found
- Meet with Action Fraud to ensure they have the resources they need to investigate companies like Miller Pattison adequately
- Work with the Welsh Government and other devolved administrations to ensure any such measures are accessible/replicable across the UK
- Provide an update as to whether the recommendations of the Each Home Counts review have been implemented and the impact, if any, this has had