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Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/473/2046

From The Socialist newspaper, 7 February 2007

Tenants pay when things go wrong

SOCIALIST PARTY members are actively involved in the campaign by tenants of Peabody Housing Trust to stop it selling off 1,100 homes on the open market. These homes are concentrated in areas of central London where the shortage of social housing reaches crisis proportions.

The Trust says it's short of 165 million needed to bring its homes up to the government's "decent homes standard". Certainly many Peabody tenants live in Dickensian conditions but to 'solve' the problem by selling off "assets" shows Peabody is operating like a private landlord.

Council tenants are told to accept transfer of their homes to HAs because associations can borrow the money needed to do up their homes. But it's the banks rather than the tenants that really benefit.

Peabody has lost financial control of high-profile building developments and made a mess of its borrowing. Last year, it had to spend 55 million to get out of a long-term bond deal where it was paying very high interest (10.25%). That money could have gone towards improving homes.

What happened to the bosses that made this mess? Richard McCarthy, chief executive at the time, has gone on to an even better paid job as the senior civil servant in charge of the decent homes standard! In this role he refused Peabody tenants' pleas to use government cash to save the homes for the social housing sector.

Apparently HAs now need to be subject to 'financial disciplines'. Floating housing associations on the stock market would give them greater 'financial freedoms' and much more scope for the bosses to mess up. The people who pay when things go wrong are tenants and homeless people.

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In The Socialist 7 February 2007:

BLAIR MUST GO!

Sold to big business

Can the Left reclaim Labour?

Merseyside Campaign for a new workers' party

Website of the Campaign for a New Workers' Party


Civil servants' strike

Interview with Mark Serwotka: "This is just the beginning of the campaign"

Welsh strikers close down Assembly


Socialist Party NHS campaign

Anger at union leaders' timidity

Manchester nurses strike against health cuts


Environment

Change the system not the climate!

Bush's bio-fuel bull


Socialist Party news and analysis

Has Manchester struck it lucky?


Socialist Party campaigns

Camden council blames cuts on 'spending gap'

Don't privatise social housing!

Tenants pay when things go wrong

Coventry - a victory for determination


Socialist Party Marxist analysis

Rising anger and discontent in Europe


International socialist news and analysis

Darfur - another failure of Western 'conflict resolution'

Sri Lanka: Keep up the protests


Socialist Party Marxist analysis

The writing on the Chinese wall


Workplace news

Stop the Valentine's Day pay massacre !

Striking back at the privateers

Corus deal threatens new cost-cutting

Cabin crew angry over BA deal

May Day greetings


 

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