Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/952/25646
From The Socialist newspaper, 14 June 2017
Low-paid work till lunch to make rent
Protesting against the effects of the housing crisis, photo Paul Mattsson (Click to enlarge)
The average low-waged worker gives nearly half of every day's pay straight to private landlords, housing charity Shelter's new statistics have revealed.
They show that low-earners have to work until lunchtime every day, or for 15 hours a week, just to pay rent on an average one-bedroom flat.
In London, where the housing crisis has reached breaking point, the numbers are worse. The average worker would have to give 78% of their wage to line their landlords' pockets for a one-bed, working almost four days each week just to make rent.
In his manifesto, Jeremy Corbyn pledged to build a million new homes over the course of the next parliament, half of which were to be council and social homes. The Socialist Party supports this, while pushing for them all to be council homes.
These kinds of policies won him a massive proportion of the youth vote - showing the thirst for socialist policies among those hit hardest by Tory austerity and the bosses' and landlords' greed.
However, in light of the results of the general election, we must press further. May's weak Tories faltered on housing during their election campaign, making a massive u-turn on a pledge to build council homes.
This was unsurprising - nearly 40% of Tory MPs in 2016 were supplementing their fat parliamentary salaries as landlords. We must fight for a massive programme of council house building, and against the sell-offs that formed the heart of the defunct Tory and Blairite housing policy.
The Socialist Party campaigns for a cap on rents, not benefits; an immediate £10 an hour minimum wage; lifetime tenancies; timely renovations and repairs instead of gentrifying 'regeneration'; and for safe, secure, affordable housing for all.
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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
- The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.
In The Socialist 14 June 2017:
Socialist Party news and analysis
City bosses' £40m bonuses as Number of food banks hits 2,000
Low-paid work till lunch to make rent
Young workers in unions earn 20% more
Corbyn surge beats Trump
General election 2017
May and Tories must go!
Northern Ireland: DUP propping up the Tories
Scotland - SNP loses but Labour could've won more
Wales: Corbyn's left surge refutes right-wing Labour doomsayers
General election: what you thought about it
Corbyn's support increases further during last week of campaign
Rallying in support of Corbyn's policies
Large turnout to hear Jeremy Corbyn
International socialist news and analysis
France - Huge voter abstention belies Macron's 'landslide' election
International news in brief
Socialist Party workplace news
NSSN conference: workers' action to kick out the Tories
GMB conference: angry mood from delegates
Window strikers joined by second plant
Exploited agency workers organise
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
The fight goes on - let's make it a socialist fight to win
Racist EDL humiliated for third time
From Militant to the Socialist Party
The Socialist 14 June 2017 |
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