Monday 16 January 2012

Guest Blog - Opposition to huge rent rise growing

By Defend Council Housing,

Anger at 8 to ten per cent council rent rises is growing. Cambridge Council is demanding Government action as in 2009, to cut the formula increase for 2012/3. See Cambridge Council letter.
Camden tenants rejected a £10 average weekly rise in rent, heating and other charges. See report here.
Harlow tenants opposed the rise at a consultation meeting last week.
The £30 bn debt settlement and inflation-busting rent formula Government are imposing on Councils, are driving huge rent rises. Tenants, trade unions and councillors rejecting the rent rises, are calling for:

* re-opening of negotiation on the debt settlement
* changes to the rent rise formula
* joint deputations to demand promised £7 bn capital funding backlog.

If Government can continue to write off Housing HRA debt for stock transfer, we should insist on a similar write-off of debt which has been paid many times over in rent and receipts siphoned off by government.Campaigns are proving we can succeed in resisting the mounting attacks on council housing.Swindon council tenants rejected transfer by 6,073 No votes (72.3%) to 2,329 Yes votes (27.7%). see report. The government is promoting a new wave of stock transfer of council homes, subsidised with more public subsidy. Where tenants choose to stay with the council they are demanding the same debt write off.
Wandsworth Council is retreating on a threat to evict a tenant, in face of a growing and determined campaign against political post-riot evictions. See report.Public meetings
Meetings around the country will challenge rent rises and government attacks on tenancies, rents and benefits:
LONDON 21 Feb 6.30 House of Commons committee room 14
LEEDS 24 Feb details to follow
CAMBRIDGE 15 March 7pm Arbury Community Centre, Campkin Rd
HARLOW29 March details to follow.
Organise a local meeting - contact DCH for speakers and leaflets.Other action
Welfare Reform Bill - Vigil & Lobby: 1pm-3pm, opposite House of Lords, Tues 17 Jan; sign petition here
Guest Blogs are always welcome at the Barnet Eye. Use the email link in the side bar.

Note : Although Defend Council Housing is a national campaign, many Barnet residents are affected by these issues.

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