Socialist Worker

Stop the housing sell-offs

Alan Walter, chair of Defend Council Housing (DCH), explains the priorities for tenants and trade unionists fighting government plans to privatise council housing

Issue No. 1967

Council tenants in Sefton and Sedgefield are the latest to vote against the transfer of their homes to a private sector housing association landlord.

Similar campaigns are vitally necessary in another 224 local council areas throughout Britain.

The tide of opposition is running strong. The four big trade unions are actively supporting direct investment in council housing as an alternative to housing privatisation, alongside others including the CWU and RMT.

Leading unions are sponsoring fringe meetings on council housing at the TUC and Labour conferences.

Where there is a united campaign of tenants and unions, privatisation can be stopped. Sefton shows that. But too often it’s a case of too little, too late.

We face a barrage of glossy propaganda, videos and DVDs that promise the earth if we accept privatisation — and threaten that our homes will be left to rot if we don’t.

Killing off privatisation and winning a no vote requires organisation on the ground. If there isn’t a local DCH campaign, socialists should take the initiative.

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Article information

Sat 10 Sep 2005, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1967
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