York Council given ‘No Evictions’ message

Around 50 people took part in Thursday night’s Bedroom Tax protest in St Helen’s Square, before the Council debated its report on the York Housing Crisis petition. Councillors arriving for the night’s Full Council session were greeted with placards and chants, and a short rally followed. As the council meeting got underway, Assembly member and York Housing Crisis campaigner Chris Fuller addressed councillors in a speech which you can watch on Youtube.

The protest was addressed by Ben Drake, who as UNISON Secretary, represents housing staff at the council. He conveyed their anger at being forced to implement policies like the Bedroom Tax. Green Councillor Dave Taylor reported on his group’s attempt to get a similar concession from the Labour group in the summer, to no avail.

Chris talked about the bedroom tax as a punishment on the poorest and most vulnerable and also took the opportunity to demand controls on spiralling private rents and a national program of new council houses. Of particular concern are those who, whilst paying their rent up to date, are falling prey to loan sharks or building arrears in other areas such as Council Tax, for which support has also been cut.

Later during the meeting, when councillors came to discuss the petition and a report written in response to it, the controlling Labour group were unable to offer any reassurances that proceedings wouldn’t be started against people who are in arrears.

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One thought on “York Council given ‘No Evictions’ message

  1. Decent housing, along with food, is a basic necessity and human right from which everything else flows – job, security, family life, inter-personal relationships, social inclusion – EVERY…THING?

    Well done York People’s Assembly for bringing the iniquitous bedroom tax to City of York Council chamber and forcing our elected representatives to decide whether or not they are prepared to evict York citizens and make them homeless simply for being poor and unable to pay the price of austerity and a financial crisis caused by self-serving politicians, bankers and corporate greed.

    As a geriatric 75 year old, living in a comfortable 2 bedroomed bungalow in Bishopthorpe, I am very conscious of my own good fortune and relative comfort and want this for all my family, future generations and for all York residents, who live and work in our beautiful North Yorkshire City.

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