The government’s reliance on housing associations rather than councils to provide homes is in crisis.
Two of Britain’s biggest housing associations are set to merge. Genesis Housing Group, based in London’s East End, is in negotiations with Notting Hill Housing Association to prevent them going bust.
It is understood that Genesis accepted an emergency loan of up to £100 million from London Quadrant Group housing association two months ago to keep its two-year plan on track.
Another housing association, Presentation Group, which has 6,000 houses in London, Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire, is also in merger talks with other housing associations.
There are some estimates that 22 housing associations are in immediate danger of failing and need to merge or be bailed out.
In contrast the campaign for council housing is busy as the year starts.
Defend Council Housing has produced a new eight page newspaper and is asking tenants, trade unionists, councillors and others to “Sign up to five demands for 2009” and organise a delegation from every area to take part in the House of Commons Council Housing Group’s new inquiry at Parliament on 25 February.
The inquiry is aimed at increasing pressure on the government’s Review of Council Housing Finance as it comes to making recommendations to secure a financial settlement for council housing and the start of a big new council house building programme.
Get tenants and trade union organisations to bulk order the new newspaper to distribute in your area (£20 per 100 / £120 per 1000 copies) and download “Sign up” form, invitation to 25 February and DCH covering letter.
More information at » www.defendcouncilhousing.org.uk