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From The Socialist newspaper, 26 January 2022

Eviction resistance on the march in Waltham Forest, east London

photo Paul Mattsson

photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Mike Cleverley, Waltham Forest Socialist Party

Every London borough has thousands of families on housing waiting lists and hundreds of empty homes. The benefit cap and the end of the eviction ban are creating a rising tide of evictions.

But Labour councils refuse to use their reserves to compulsorily purchase these homes or to build sufficient council housing. Waltham Forest Council is typical.

The local trades union council set up the Housing Action Network, which is organising 'eviction resistance' in response to this emergency. The campaign has been approached by four families being evicted.

In each case, the council has refused to offer permanent homes in the borough, instead, giving them 24 hours' notice, and a rail ticket to far-off places they may never have even been to, like Derby or Stoke-on-Trent. These 'offers' are accompanied by a threat that, if they don't accept the move, the councillors will wash their hands of any responsibility for their fate.

Some have been offered rodent-infested rooms in shared houses, or single rooms for the whole family in another borough too far for them to get to work. This policy particularly affects single mothers in part-time, low-paid jobs.

On 22 January, 50 people met in Wood Street Square, which used to be surrounded by social housing, but now has been handed over to developers selling flats for £500,000. The 'open-mike' allowed two of the evicted mothers to speak.

Socialist Party members Nancy Taaffe and Linda Taaffe spoke from the Housing Action Network and trades union council, respectively. They expressed their anger at the methods used by the Labour council - expelling working-class families in order to carry out gentrification.

We then marched to five empty flats. There I spoke to call on the protesters to consider standing for the council themselves.

During the last full council elections, the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) polled 2,841 votes across Waltham Forest. And in last year's London Assembly elections, Nancy Taaffe won 3,236 votes in the North East constituency.

We were surrounded by local people, signing our petition, taking leaflets, buying the Socialist. In the coming weeks, we know we will be defending these families from bailiffs, and campaigning for the council elections in May.

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In The Socialist 26 January 2022:


What we think

We need a workers' alternative to big business Tories and Labour


News

Lords reject parts of anti-protest bill

News in brief

Social care providers put profit before residents' needs - nationalise care now


Cost of living

Cost of living crisis


Trade unions and the cuts

Trade unions and the fight against council cuts


Workplace news

Barts NHS workers strike back

Sheffield Just Eat strikers step up action and hold mass rally

Oaks Park School: valiant strike exposed state of schools

Education: Workload and inflation goes up, incomes fall

DWP reps demand action from PCS leadership

10,000 tube workers vote to strike - don't make workers pay for TfL funding crisis

Strike action by Carmarthenshire winter gritters wins concessions from council

Universities: Strike action at 68 in two disputes

Worksop Wincanton logistics workers begin ninth week of strike action


International news

Trade unionists in the USA fighting back


Campaigns news

Hundreds protest to save St Mary's Leisure Centre in Southampton

Wakefield TUSC - Fighting for low-paid workers and NHS

Eviction resistance on the march in Waltham Forest

This is students' chance to fight back - help build 2 March NUS walkout

Selling the Socialist


Environment

Britain's waterways choked with a 'chemical cocktail'


Readers' opinion

War in Yemen, made in Harlow, profit for rich

Somers 'slaughterhouse' Forge

UK Covid-19 mortality similar to Spanish Flu

It's my party, and I'll lie if I want to


 

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Related links:

Waltham Forest:

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Perspectives for the fightback in England & Wales

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Building the Socialist Party

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Trade unions and the fight back

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Fighting for trans rights

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Fighting for trans rights

London:

triangleHackney & Islington Socialist Party: Crisis in the Ukraine

triangleLondon Socialist Party women's meeting

triangleNewham City Farm - closed with no consultation

triangleTube workers strike in defence of pay, pensions and conditions

East London:

triangleEast London Socialist Party: The East London Matchgirls' strike

triangleBarts NHS strike

triangleForce back Serco and Barts management!

Council:

triangleBrighton Green and Labour cuts - workers and communities fight back

triangleRestore Cardiff's slashed services

Housing:

triangleStop eviction of Camden homeless collective

Socialist:

triangleCarlisle Socialist Party: What now for Ukraine and Russia?

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

23/2/22

Cardiff

Restore Cardiff's slashed services

23/2/22

Pay

Just Eat couriers continue action to fight pay cut

23/2/22

UCU

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23/2/22

London

Tube workers strike in defence of pay, pensions and conditions

23/2/22

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Workers and students unite and fight

23/2/22

Fees

Fighting fees and marketisation after 2 March student walkout

23/2/22

Brighton

Brighton Green and Labour cuts - workers and communities fight back

23/2/22

Anti-cuts

Surrey: Unions and campaigns say stand as an anti-cuts candidate

23/2/22

Newham

Newham City Farm - closed with no consultation

23/2/22

Women

London Socialist Party women's meeting

23/2/22

Socialist

1 March: Socialist Party new website launch

23/2/22

Coventry

Coventry bin strikers lobby strike-breaking Labour council

23/2/22

Strike

Scunny scaffs action forces bosses to the table

23/2/22

Usdaw

Usdaw: 'Reinstate Max' week of action

23/2/22

Anti-cuts

Trade union support for standing anti-cuts election candidates

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


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