Sky News interview (15.4.2013) with Federation secretary on day of introduction of benefit cap pilot scheme in four London boroughs including Haringey.
The benefit cap is due to start on 15thApril in Haringey, Enfield, Bromley and Croydon, before being rolled out nationwide in the summer. These four trial boroughs were apparently chosen because one office processes all their benefit claims.On the day of its introduction, we are asking opponents of the benefit cap from all over London to join us in an early morning protest at this faceless DWP hideaway in Stratford.
Stratford Benefit Delivery Centre, Department for Work & Pensions, Jubilee House, Farthingale Walk, Stratford, E15 1AW. Just next to the HMRC enquiry centre, a minute’s walk from Stratford station. Overground/tube: Stratford
The overall benefit cap is part of the government’s welfare reforms, along with the bedroom tax, changes to council tax benefit and Universal Credit. In Haringey alone, over 1,000 families are affected by the cap, facing cuts to their housing benefit and eventually eviction. Read the rest of this post »
April 7, 2013 Tags: benefit cap pilot protest, cap rents not benefit, haringey benefit cap, haringey housing, haringey housing action group, scrap the benefit cap, scrap the cap Posted in: LOCAL ACTIONS, NEWS, PRIVATE TENANTS Comments Closed
NO GENTRIFICATION FOR TOTTENHAM! – The threat to people on low incomes and ethnic minorities from Haringey Council’s ‘Plan For Tottenham’
On 31st July 2012, Haringey Council announced a regeneration plan, the Plan for Tottenham, which it claims will create thousands of new homes and jobs in the wake of the riots of August 2011 (1). The small print of this plan reveals that it is actually a plan which will push up house prices and rents, reduce the amount of council housing in the area, force out small shops and drive out large numbers of the poor and members of ethnic minorities to make way for a new higher-income population. This is gentrification – people with lower incomes being forced out of an area to make way for the people with higher incomes and the middle class. Hardly any effort is being made to increase the amount of genuinely affordable, rented social housing to re-house people displaced from private housing by new quality standards and higher rents.
The signs are that Haringey Council believes it is acceptable to meet affordable accommodation targets with shared ownership or intermediate rent housing both of which are out of the price range of the lowest income families. At the same time, Haringey Council has allowed Tottenham Hotspur to go back on a promise to provide extra social housing.This is despite the fact plans are being discussed that may mean that large numbers of council homes are demolished to help facilitate the building of the new Spurs stadium. The Plan that may be adopted is to sell land on which the Love Lane/Whitehall Street estate currently stands to fund infrastructure required for the new Tottenham Hotspur stadium. Haringey Council is also planning to ‘regenerate’ other estates in Tottenham and urgent clarification is needed about which estates are being considered and where the residents of these estates will be re-housed. Ordinary people in Tottenham are being encouraged to support regeneration as an improvement to the area but a few years from now it may well be that a lot of them will not be around to see the alleged improvements.
In December 2012 It Took Another Riot was published by the Mayor of London’s Independent Panel on Tottenham, chaired by property developer Stuart Lipton. This report contains a passage seeming to put collective blame on the people of Tottenham for the riots and another passage that seems to partly blame Tottenham’s problems on immigration. It calls for higher rents and a greater proportion of owner-occupied properties in Tottenham. Current regeneration plans appear to follow the approach of the Independent Panel’s report. The plans look like an attempt to reduce the numbers of certain groups within the population, in response to the riots of August 2011. The plans will make it harder for lower income people to live in Tottenham and more attractive for people who work in the City of London to move to Tottenham. These riots were provoked by the misconduct of the authorities and police racism. It is an outrage that the people of Tottenham are being collectively punished for them by gentrification.
DISPLACEMENT OF PRIVATE TENANTS – HOMES IN MULTIPLE OCCUPATION AND IMMIGRATION
The Plan for Tottenham advocates measures to reduce the numbers of Homes in Multiple Occupations (HMOs) that will be likely to displace many members of immigrant communities. Read the rest of this post »
Haringey residents call for a fightback against Government housing policies threatening the homes of thousands of local residents
- public meeting calls for affordable, secure, local, decent housing for all
- local campaigning launched against the bedroom tax, benefits cap and other unjust measures
- ‘social cleansing’ condemned as local residents refuse to be forced out of their own borough by high rents and benefit cuts
On Saturday 16th March nearly 60 residents attended a ‘Decent Homes For All’ public mini-conference in Wood Green Library. The event, called by a number of residents’ action groups concerned with housing issues, brought people together to share their experiences and views about a whole range of shocking Government-driven attacks on local people’s housing rights. These include the notorious bedroom tax, scandalous benefit cuts and cap, weakening of tenants rights, the undermining of access to Council housing, and much more.
The Council and also Housing Associations were criticised for going along with the Government, and for failing to defend the rights of tenants. Private landlords were roundly condemned for the ever-increasing rent levels, failure to provide secure tenancies, discrimination against those on benefits and general exploitation of local tenants. Local house prices and mortgages are unaffordable to most people, so even homeowners are struggling to pay their bills. This ‘perfect storm’ of totally unacceptable policies and practices is leading to a sharp rise in homelessness and overcrowding, and ‘social cleansing’ as local people are being forced out of their own borough.
“ The housing rights of tens of thousands of Haringey residents are being undermined by unacceptable Government-driven changes – benefit cuts, the bedroom tax, soaring private rents, lack of Council housing and so on. We call on everyone to demand decent, secure, affordable, local homes for all. ”
- Matt Salusbury (private tenant and one of the organisers)
March 17, 2013 Tags: benefit cap, benefit cap campaign, cut the benefit cap, haringey benefit cap, haringey benefit cuts, haringey housing action, haringey housing action group, haringey private tenants, haringey residents, housing action group, scrap the benefit cap, scrap the cap, take action against the benefit cap, what to do benefit cap Posted in: NEWS Comments Closed