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Hackney: We don't want homes and retail units working-class people can't afford
Angry residents, from Hackney east London, packed into a meeting at the Dan West Trelawney estate community hall. Labour mayor Philip Glanville tried to justify the council's decision to ask a private developer to revamp the site of the local Tesco.
The proposal is for a smaller Tesco supermarket, more retail and work units and two 19-storey tower blocks with 531 flats. We don't want more retail units that working-class people can't afford.
None of the flats will be at council rents and less than 50% will be so-called affordable. Residents are angry at the lack of council housing.
When we pushed the mayor to explain what he meant by "affordable housing", he couldn't answer, and instead just referred us to the council website. This meeting showed the potential to build a big effective campaign around this issue.
Another meeting has been organised. Socialist Party member Brian Debus also suggested a committee be formed - involving residents, tenants' organisations and trade unions - to coordinate the fight. That would really help this campaign.
Chris Newby, Hackney Socialist Party
The issues raised above are among the many reasons why it is important to fight for socialists to be in London's City Hall. See a socialist manifesto for London and donate to the campaign for socialist policies in London's May elections, at: www.londonsocialistparty.org.uk
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