Socialist Worker

Anger at south London eviction threats

Issue No. 2268

Defend Council Housing protesters outside the court hearing  (Pic: Smallman )

Defend Council Housing protesters outside the court hearing (Pic: Guy Smallman)

Residents and activists are campaigning against threats by two south London councils to evict families of people convicted over the riots.

Local residents and Defend Council Housing (DCH) activists picketed the hearing of Daniel Sartain-Clarke at a south London magistrates’ court on Tuesday.

Tory-run Wandsworth council has threatened Daniel’s mother with eviction from her council flat.

Campaigner Chris Kelly said, “These evictions are a double punishment on those being sent to court, and a punishment of their families.”

A lively protest was also held outside the council meeting in nearby Southwark on Wednesday of last week.

Labour-run Southwark council has sent 35 letters to tenants warning that they may lose their homes if they or others in the household are convicted.

London Assembly member Jenny Jones lives locally. She told Socialist Worker, “It’s appalling that a Labour council is trying to out-Tory the Tories.”

Tony Belton, leader of the Labour opposition on Wandsworth Council, joined the protest, as did activists from DCH, Southwark Save Our Services and Southwark Pensioners’ Action Group.

Councils have faced criticism over eviction plans, and there are doubts over their legality. But David Cameron and housing minister Grant Schapps have backed them and are planning a new attack on housing benefits.

Wandsworth Against Cuts has called a lobby against the evictions at the next council meeting. Wednesday 21 September, 6.30pm, Wandsworth Town Hall, 58 Wandsworth High Street, London SW18

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Tue 6 Sep 2011, 18:56 BST
Issue No. 2268
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