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Scotland's for Council Housing! Glasgow Demo, 24th September

category ireland / britain | community struggles | press release author Friday September 18, 2009 07:05author by jimbob - Liberty and Solidarity & IWW Report this post to the editors

Glasgow tenants to demonstrate against Housing Association

With the full backing of the Glasgow chapter of Liberty and Solidarity and local community newspaper 'The Burgh Angel' , Hamiltonhill Action Group will be holding a demonstration with the Scottish Tenants Organisation on Thursday 24th September, against the Glasgow Housing Association's (GHA) refusal to invest money in their community.

Since putting in a formal request to GHA for a timetable of works to install 'Secured By Design' steel security doors in Hamiltonhill, the Hamiltonhill Action Group have now escalated the campaign, since GHA have chosen to completely ignore both the request and complaint logged by the residents via the Action Group.

Over a month has passed since the Action Group registered their official request but GHA has been deathly silent despite follow up correspondence from the Group and residents. Even according to their own agenda and targets of responding to resident’s requests and correspondence the GHA have failed. Considering a colossal 50% of the budget is spent on administration, surely it can’t be an issue of not having enough people to answer the phones??!!

GHA have shown themselves to be unconcerned for their tenants health and safety, consistently ignoring demands for investment to be made to improve the quality of social housing in the area. However, Hamiltonhill has been subject to a systematic programme of neglect by GHA and Glasgow City Council, prior to it being earmarked for demolition in 2008 and as a local resident said:-

“We have stayed here 9 years, and our door always opens when you press the service button, at any time. They don’t think there is anything wrong with that.”

Having publicised their situation throughout and beyond Glasgow, Hamiltonhill Action Group have now gained the support of the Scottish Tenants Organisation as well as neighbouring estates giving further signs of solidarity and support for this growing community movement. The Scottish Tenants Organisation was borne out of the great Glasgow Rent Strikes of 1915 - where working class locals, mostly women in organised tenants' groups, were successful in fighting against the rent increases heaped on them by exploitative and profiteering landlords during the First World War. This historic strike movement, echoed in other parts of Scotland and the UK, forced the government to freeze rents to pre-war levels and still serves as an example of how collective, direct action can really get results.

The Action Group are holding a weekly stall immediately outside GHA headquarters and have made contact with several other resident’s groups in Glasgow. There have also been a large number of unaffiliated social housing residents coming up to the stall to share stories and generally showing GHA that ordinary, working class Glasgow is fully involved in supporting the campaign for better social housing, whether it is in Possil, Parkhead or Pollokshields.

The two groups have called a national demonstration on Thursday the 24th of September in Glasgow to show that the people of Scotland want and are in need of safe, secure, dry and affordable social housing and demand respect for their communities and themselves from the people who are meant to be working for them.

Isn’t it time that something changed?

Tenants and the STO are now calling a national demonstration, on the 24th of September, to demand investment in public sector housing:
* We demand steel doors for Hamiltonhill. We demand real investment.
* We demand an end to unnecessary demolitions.
* We demand an end to the failed policy of stock transfer.
* We demand an end to right to buy. We demand debt write-off for local authorities, to give council a level playing field.
* We demand that public sector housing is an option of choice. We demand respect, in Hamiltonhill, across Scotland.

Glasgow has a proud working class tradition of collectively fighting ruling class exploitation, from the Rent Strikes to the Poll Tax, so join the Scottish Tenants Organisation, Liberty and Solidarity and The Burgh Angel in supporting the Hamiltonhill Action Group -

See you on Thursday the 24th of September, 11am in Glasgow.

Please get in touch for details if you hope to attend: //

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