Tuesday, 21 August 2012

The Ghost of Dame Shirley Porter.

The Government in the UK have thrown their support behind right wing think tank Policy Exchange that councils should consider selling off their most expensive houses in order to to build more cheaper houses

Policy Exchange is David Cameron's Favourite think tank and they claim selling high value homes when they become vacant would raise £4.5bn a year.

That would be enough to build 80,000 to 170,000 social homes, the report said.

In its Ending Expensive Social Tenancies report, Policy Exchange argues the move could create the largest social house building programme since the 1970s - giving the economy a kickstart.

Sounds like a good Idea?  Yeah sure!

The real truth lie in the statement of Neil O'Brien, the think tank's director, who .said that 
" social housing would still exist in very expensive areas under the proposal, but there would just be "less of it".
This seems to me to show the true purpose is to move people in social housing to "designated areas" and to provide only basic housing in these areas.

They claim the houses would only become vacant and people would not be evicted . But the government have already proposed that people should be limited in the time they could live in social housing.

Certainly not the sort of housing that was build in the 1920 and 30 which are so often praised on the sort of programme on television that shows house restoration for sale or rent like "Homes under the Hammer".

Probably  the sort of housing Neil O'Brien is talking about.

Th e Con/LibDem government have already limited housing benefit forcing people to leave areas with high rents (where they have lived all their lives) to less affluent areas.

The report "Ending Expensive Social Tenancies"  may not be the same deliberate policy as  the Westminster Council scandal of 1986 when fearing that they would eventually lose control unless there was a permanent change in the social composition of the borough, It's leader Dame Shirley Porter instituted a secret policy known as 'Building Stable Communities'.

Eight wards were selected as 'key wards' – in public it was claimed that these wards were subject to particular 'stress factors' leading to a decline in the population of Westminster. In reality, secret documents showed that the wards most subject to these stress factors were rather different, and that the eight wards chosen had been the most marginal in the City Council elections of 1986.

An important part of this policy was the designation of much of Westminster's council housing for commercial sale, rather than re-letting when the properties became vacant. The designated housing was concentrated in those wards most likely to change hands to Labour in the elections.

Does this ring a bell?

The policy was judged illegal by the district auditor, and a surcharge of £27m levied on her in 1996.[ This was later raised to £42 million with interest and costs.

Since this would be a government initiative then it probably would not be subject to a legal challenge but it does look somewhat similar in that a policy that is claimed to help the worse of is simply a form of social cleansing moving poorer people out of affluent (and Tory voting areas) to sink estates where they may vote Labour or probably not at all.

It may be that Labour will only put up a little fight.  They have long abandoned those living in social housing. Reasoning they already have the voted of those who bother to turn out at elections and that their future depends on "Middle England", who may be supportive of the end of Social Housing in their quiet suburbs.

Once again we have a report backed by the Con/LibDem government, that attacks the lives of working people whilst making elaborate claims that they will benefit from it

The true nature of course is to gain the support of "Middle England" whilst those less well off will be allowed to sink further into poverty .

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