Socialist Worker

Amicus: hands up for housing

Issue No. 2056

Hundreds of delegates to the Amicus union conference waved paper hands demanding the fourth option for council housing at incoming prime minister Gordon Brown as he addressed them on Monday of this week.

The fourth option means direct investment in council housing without privatisation of any sort.

A swathe of tenants’ votes against the privatisation of their council homes and a Defend Council Housing (DCH) campaign involving MPs, trade unionists and tenants has put pressure on the government.

Brown said, “I cannot promise to implement the fourth option on council housing today but what I will tell you is that councils will be allowed to build homes again.”

Alan Walter, chair of DCH, told Socialist Worker, “This shows that the campaign has got the government in negotiating mode. DCH is going to keep fighting.

“Councils around the country are still pushing privatisation. We need a clear statement of intent from Brown about the timescale of the implementation of the fourth option.

“If we do not get that before the Labour Party national policy forum on 14 and 15 July we will be arguing that there should be a minority or majority report from that forum sent to the Labour Party conference in September.

“This will ensure that the government faces the certainty of a debate for a fourth year running.”

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Wed 20 Jun 2007, 10:53 BST
Issue No. 2056
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