As courts re-open, Britain’s renters must confront the power of landlords

18 August 2020 — Open Democracy

“Alas, many middle class people are now invested in this relationship of domination.”

London Renters Union twitter.

There was a moment, just after the declaration of lockdown, with the immediate loss of jobs and hours, when it seemed that a rent strike might be inevitable. Many members of London Renters Union thought there might finally be a moment of unity between renters affected by the pandemic that could be leveraged into much greater power against landlords. When evictions were temporarily suspended some members grew even more excited: for once private renters did not have the sword of Damocles hanging over them. This was the moment to strike! Others had a similar idea and Rent Strike London was launched, pulling ahead of London Renters Union, necessarily slower-moving as a large democratic organisation. For a week or two it felt like we might get the biggest rent strike going in British history.

Organising for economic justice ─ the eviction crisis in the time of COVID-19

15 August 2020 — Medact

First of all, I just wanted to say a huge thank you to all who have contributed to building our new Economic Justice & Health Group so far this year. This is such a critical area to be organising in right now. This month it has been fantastic to see our Economic Justice research group carry forward its work with some admirable examples of scholarship and collaboration, and making great progress on this project.

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UK: The Tenants Taking on Their Billionaire Landlord

29 July 2020 — Novara Media

Somerford grove

by Sophie Hemery

@SophieHemery

Jordan Osserman was knocking on doors in his east London apartment block in late April, asking his neighbours about their rental situations during the pandemic, when he noticed he was being filmed by a security guard hiding behind a stack of boxes. A few days later he was holding a banner saying “food not rent” when he noticed that, once again, he was being filmed.

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Tell the government to end the rent debt crisis

1 July 2020 — Generation Rent

“While the immediate public health effects of coronavirus are subsiding to a degree, the economic impact is only just starting to be felt. So if nothing else is put in place huge numbers of tenants will be unable to pay their rent and will lose their homes as a result.”

That’s what our Policy Manager Caitlin told MPs on the Housing Committee on Monday.

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June 27 – #CantPayWontPay Day of Action

19 June 2020 — London Renters Union

The government has announced a 2 month extension of the eviction ban – the first victory of the Can’t Pay Won’t Pay campaign.

Research by the Resolution Foundation showed that hundreds of thousands of renters across London are in debt to their landlord. Unless the government cancels rent debt and makes the eviction ban permanent, renters will remain in huge danger.

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