Housing

Grenfell Fire: Never Again!

This is a joint blog post from Tubeworker and Off The Rails.


The working-class people killed in the Grenfell Fire were killed because they were working-class. They were killed for being working-class — and, many of them, for being people of colour, and/or from migrant backgrounds — and not being able to afford better quality housing, or to afford legal representation to challenge the negligence of their landlords that tenants' groups had called out for years.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Trade Unions: 

Grenfell: Capitalism kills

Author: 

Gemma Short

Around 1am on Wednesday 13 June a fire tore through 24-storey Grenfell Tower in the London borough of Kensington and Chelsea, killing a currently unknown number of people. Firefighters have told people the number will be in triple figures.

The fire at Grenfell Tower has exposed inequality in housing and exploded the narrative that “we’re all in this together”. The class divide exists. It kills people.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Corbyn is right: occupy the palaces of the rich to help the homeless!

Jeremy Corbyn has said that empty properties owned by the rich should be requisitioned or occupied for the homeless

Jeremy Corbyn has demanded that the empty houses of the rich in Kensington be requisitioned to house the victims of the Grenfell fire.

Why is the basic human need of shelter privatised? Why is land distributed so that some have large homes with many spare rooms, or multiple homes, and others are packed into overcrowded death-traps?

How can we have empty homes when 170,000 people are homeless in London alone?

Issues and Campaigns: 

Justice for Grenfell!

Author: 

Gemma Short

Late at night on Tuesday 13 June, a fire gutted Grenfell Tower in west London.

It is likely that a large number of people have died: firefighters have told people the number will be in triple figures. Many hundreds of people's lives have been destroyed as their family members, friends, neighbours, and homes have been taken from them.

Our solidarity is with those families and with the emergency service workers who battled to save them whilst witnessing harrowing scenes.

Protests demand justice for the victims of Grenfell and change.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Labour: rebuild the welfare state

Author: 

Gemma Short

The welfare state created by the 1945 Labour government was a little bit of the “political economy of the working class” carved out of a still capitalist economy (a phrase Karl Marx first used to describe the victory of the fight for a ten-hour working day).

To some extent the ruling class has been forced to accept a minimal level of state provision. There is a constant battle over what proportion of profits is redirected, over who should receive support, and what sort of support is given. The ruling class has been winning that battle for some time.

The Labour manifesto is a significant shift from decades of neo-liberal consensus where the “political economy of the ruling class”, the rule of the market in every aspect of our lives, has almost destroyed the “political economy of the working class” carved out of capitalism in the shape of the welfare state.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Stop council give-away

Author: 

Michael Johnson

Local community and Labour Party resistance is growing to Labour-led Haringey Council’s plans to put £2 billion of public assets in a Haringey Development Vehicle (HDV) — a body half-owned by the council and half by a private developer. The proposed scheme, the largest of its kind ever attempted by a local authority, will see homes, schools, libraries and land handed over to the new HDV.

Labour-led Haringey Council plans to put £2 billion of public assets into a body half-owned by the council and half by a private developer.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Lots of “old” cuts still to come

Author: 

Colin Foster

Theresa May’s Tory government has said that it will decide no new welfare cuts. What makes this a half-truth, or even an outright untruth, is that big cuts, maybe even bigger cuts than the government can realistically manage, have already been programmed by previous Tory decisions.

Theresa May’s government has said there will be no new welfare cuts, but big cuts have already been programmed by previous Tory decisions.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

£1,000 rent rise

70,000 households will face a rent rise of over £1,000 a year from next April, imposed by the government. The Housing Act, passed into law last year, forces councils to levy 15p extra rent for every £1 a household’s income is above £31,000, or £40,000 in London. It defines every household with two earners on £15,500, or £20,000 in London, as “high income”. That affects 9.3% of all council households in the south-east.

The Housing Act, passed into law last year, forces councils to levy 15p extra rent for every £1 a household’s income is above £31,000, or £40,000 in London.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

Rents spiral: up 48% since 2007

Author: 

Colin Foster

Even on the mean average income — which is quite a bit higher than the median income, the income of the worker halfway up the income range — a young worker now has to pay out 57% of her or his income to rent an average one-bedroom home in London.

Even on the mean average income — which is quite a bit higher than the median income, the income of the worker halfway up the income range — a young worker now has to pay out 57% of her or his income to rent an average one-bedroom home in London.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

Rents spiral, especially in London

Author: 

Martin Thomas

Even on the mean average income - which is quite a bit higher than the median income, the income of the worker halfway up the income range - a young worker now has to pay out 57% of her or his income to rent an average one-bedroom home in London.

Rents are spiralling, and the new Housing Act will make things worse.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Pages