Friday, March 5News For London

Housing Bill said to increase number of homeless in London

Londoners face the risk of losing their homes if the new Housing and Planning Bill is passed, the Lambeth Housing Activists warned hundreds of protestors on Saturday.

Protesters chanted: “Here to stay, here to fight.” Credit: Romana Bekkai

The march against the new bill and the damage it may bring upon Londoners, began in the borough of Lambeth and ended outside 10 Downing Street on Saturday 30 January.

Through the new Housing bill recently discussed in the Parliament, the government aims to increase home owners by privatising the sector.

Leaders of the Green Party and Revolutionary Communists were present at the rally organised by the Lambeth Housing Activists, as well as some Labour and LibDem members.

Many people stood the ground and expressed their solidarity to the housing issues in London, as many tweets reveal.

The Green Party Leader, Natalie Bennett protested against the lack of affordable houses if the bill passes.

She said the new bill would “destroy” social housing and that every council house in London would be sold.

The Lambeth Housing Activists claimed that government plans to secure lifetime tenancies and force councils to sell their council homes will result in a lack of affordable housing in London.

The government is going to “force the councils to sell off their best homes,” the Lambeth Housing Activists said.

A protester from Lambeth Housing denounced the price of homes in London, saying “half a million pounds for a medium flat” is already too much.

Activists said this march was about a concern for future generations and how the government is destroying  that “Councils Houses is why [their] grand-parents fought for after the war”, blaming the government for destroying it.

The leader of Conservative councillors across the country, Lord Porter, warned that the new bill would lead to the loss of 80,000 council houses and add more than £200m a year to the housing benefit bill by 2020.

According to the Guardian, the government described these statistics as “misleading and based on speculation”.

A national march against the new bill will take place in London on 13 March.

Subedited by Katy Scott, Giovanni Prati and Aylin Kaya