Lambeth’s ‘shortlife’ scandal
Lambeth Council is currently destroying housing co-ops that have existed in the borough for 40 years, while at the same time marketing itself as a ‘co-operative council’.
Lambeth’s ‘recall’ of ‘shortlife’ housing means that members of these co-ops (including OAPs and other vulnerable people) are being taken to court so that the council can gain possession of their homes – homes that co-op residents have maintained across this 40-year period – and sell them on the open market, at auction.
Against a background of threatened evictions, legal intimidation, hypocrisy and mismanagement, housing co-op residents, supported by their MP (Kate Hoey), are still hoping that Lambeth Council will seek a more constructive way of working with them and have promoted a ‘Super Co-op’ that would have borough-wide benefits and leave a legacy of social housing in Lambeth.
But Lambeth are not listening, despite the involvement of co-op housing experts.
Lambeth Council has instead:
- pulled away from a social housing solution and enforced evictions
- purged established communities and destroyed family life built up over 4 decades
- broken clear promises made by councillors to these communities
- sold social housing units and displaced people onto the already overcrowded waiting list
- spent money on lawyers, vacant property managers, contractors and auctioneers
- picked on the vulnerable and the elderly, causing serious psychological and physical harm
- used re-housing offers as instruments of coercion & charged exorbitant legal fees as a scare tactic (up to 5 times what defendants are paying their solicitors, residents are also threatened with “unauthorised occupation charges”)
- repeatedly denied democratic means of holding the evictions policy to account and stifled any criticism from among councillors
- refused to answer key questions on the legal basis for the policy
A conspiracy of silence and a litany of failure that would shame any local authority!
Please support us in our campaign to stop the evictions and for a common sense and fair solution.
More information can be found on http://www.lambethunitedhousingco-op.org.uk/