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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 December 2018

Arrogant landlords can be beaten

Marching against the housing crisis, photo Paul Mattsson

Marching against the housing crisis, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Paul Kershaw, chair, Unite union housing workers' branch

Housing association bosses gave Theresa May a standing ovation after a speech on housing policy - you wouldn't find an audience of housing workers or tenants do that.

Catalyst Housing boss toldLondon Assembly (LA) members that his organisation had derecognised unions in order to listen to its staff better! The LA housing committee vice-chair said they wouldn't accept that from a private employer let alone one that gets public funding.

And housing bosses said that they hadn't followed the information commissioner's request that they proactively share fire-risk assessments with residents because they wouldn't understand them!

Housing association tenants and workers increasingly see these landlords as narrowly profit-focussed and are getting organised through the Social Housing Action Campaign (Shac).

While pressure has forced retreats, the deregulation of housing associations remains.

Associations can now convert social-rented homes to more expensive tenures without consent from the housing regulator.

More than 100,000 social-rent homes were lost in this way from 2011-12 to 2016-17. The rate of these homes being lost has declined somewhat following pressure. But 5,344 were still lost in 2017-18.

Housing Association rents have risen by 60 a week since 2002 - faster than wages - and the impact of Universal Credit is making things even worse.

Jeremy Corbyn has called for a return to the level of council-house building last seen in the 1970s. He needs to link that to calls for mass action to get the Tories out so he can implement this demand.

It must also be translated into specific commitments to fully fund a mass programme of council-house building and Housing Association residents must be given a real say.

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In The Socialist 5 December 2018:


What we think

Corbyn and trade union movement urgently need to fight for a general election to kick out the Tories


International socialist news and analysis

France: mass demonstrations force president to back down

Midwives go on strike in New Zealand


Socialist Party feature

The growth of artificial intelligence technology


Workplace news and analysis

PCS AGS election: Where now after the PCS Left Unity conference?

Blairite Birmingham steps up union-busting and two workforces plan strikes

Victory! Grimethorpe dinner ladies' strike beats job cuts

Victory for left in RMT union president election

WHSmith: hands off our Post Offices!

Bradford College joins #FEfightback strike for decent pay

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party news and analysis

Austerity: not one more day - Tories out now

Health bosses move goalposts on A&E waiting times: more funds for our NHS now!

Northamptonshire council crisis continues

Arrogant landlords can be beaten

Fatal bus crash - an avoidable tragedy

Racist attack in Huddersfield


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Fight Cardiff Council's school cuts

Join the march through Woking against austerity

Fighting NHS and fire services cuts and closures in Merseyside

Socialist Party argues against fire service cuts at Tyne and Wear consultation

Leeds TUC conference to organise fight against austerity

West Midlands Socialist Party women's meeting: our role in changing society

Socialist Students conference date set


 

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