The minister made the comment in response to a question about the purpose of social housing at the Savills Annual Housing Seminar.
According to Inside Housing:
“During a question and answer session, Matthew Bailes, chief executive of Paradigm Housing, asked: “Who do you think social housing is for – is it just for the most vulnerable or a wider cross-section of the population?”
The minister responded that he has found during his social housing roadshow across the country “that people feel that actually there is a stigma attached to being in social housing”.
The BBC’s Mark Easton, who was chairing the session, challenged Mr Sharma on this point, saying that part of the problem was that social housing had been “residualised” to the point that only the most vulnerable people can live in it.
In response Mr Sharma said something housing associations are doing and which he “certainly encourages” is offering homes of different tenures “so shared ownership, rent-to-buy, as well as direct rent”. He added: “Ultimately this is about making sure there are people in homes and they have to be cross-tenure.” ”