50 signatures reached
To: Peter John, Leader of Southwark Council
Guarantee the future of our independent tenants’ movement in Southwark
Southwark Council wants to dismantle the independent tenants movement in Southwark and replace it with a fake system where only the council will decide who gets to take part. The council wants to take over the management of the Tenants Fund and prevent local residents from directly controlling and funding our own organisations.
Why is this important?
The tenant’s movement in Southwark will exist in name only if we are reliant on Southwark councillors to approve our funding.
At a time when Southwark is undergoing unprecedented levels of regeneration such as in the Old Kent Road, and when Labour have a massive majority on the council, this seems like a blatant attempt to silence all potential critics of council plans.
The tenants’ movement in Southwark – our Tenants and Residents Associations (TRAs), our Area Forums, our Tenants’ and Leaseholders’ Councils and our tenants federation (the SGTO) – all play a vital role in holding Southwark Council to account. Southwark Council is our landlord and we need the freedom to criticise them when necessary and to campaign on behalf of residents without fear of having our funding withdrawn.
The recommendation to change the funding structure is part of a raft of attacks on tenants which came from the Resident Involvement Panel - a panel of handpicked individual residents and paid employees of the council which was set up without the involvement of any existing tenant organisations.
This whole process was a sham and Southwark Labour should immediately reassure Southwark residents that they will reject these recommendations.
We demand our right to have access to our own money, to fund our own representative organisations, and to have our voices heard.