Communications News: Shelter targets bad housing in national pre-election drive

Shelter is to refocus its future communications to try to put bad housing at the forefront of politicians' minds in the run up to the next election.

It has developed a new corporate identity and adopted the strapline 'Bad housing wrecks lives' to engage the public in the problems created by overcrowded, unfit or emergency housing.

The charity plans to mobilise the public using viral marketing, postcards and stunts at music festivals this summer to dispel the widespread belief that rough sleeping is the only issue that needs to be addressed.

"Bad housing has slipped down the political agenda," said Ben Jackson, Shelter's director of communications and campaigns. "We have decades of under-investment and the selling-off of council housing to overcome."

The charity launched its first-ever nationwide campaign last week, called 'One Million Children'.

In a report titled Toying with their future, the charity claims that one in 12 children in the UK is more likely to develop diseases such as asthma, bronchitis or tuberculosis because of bad housing, and that homeless children miss out on a quarter of their schooling.

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