Saturday, 24 March 2007

Swansea votes NO to council house sell-off!

Note: Grassroots campaigner, Paul Lynch, Chair of Swansea Defend Council Housing will be a Respect candidate in the May elections, heading up the list for South Wales West, campaigning for new sustainable council houses to be built & for welfare not warfare.

With councils attempting to privatise and sell off council housing this is a blow against neoliberalism - not won through politicians - but fought for at the grassroots by ordinary working class people. It was one of the highest NO votes in one of the highest turnouts of any votes that have taken place in the UK and is already having massive repercussions across Wales.
Council tenants in Swansea have delivered a resounding no to the council's plans to transfer their entire housing stock to a private limited company.Some 13,800 homes were up for grabs, and on a 56 percent turnout 72 percent of tenants voted no to the Lib Dem council's plans.
Chair of Swansea Defend Council Housing Paul Lynch says, speaking in a personal capacity,
“I am absolutely delighted that the overwhelming majority of tenants throughout Swansea have seen through the council's one-sided pro-transfer propaganda.
Tenants deserve to be congratulated for standing up to the bullying, and for effectively telling the council, the Assembly and Gordon Brown that we will not be blackmailed into privatisation.
Well done to all those who have supported the Swansea Defend Council Housing campaign in achieving this crucial No vote. The strength and unity we created as a broad coalition of different groups just goes to show how effective we can be when we unite behind a common cause.
Being involved with this campaign has inspired me to continue defending our public services. I have recently been selected as a Welsh Assembly candidate for Respect, along with my colleague Ahmed Al Jeffrey, in the South Wales West region.
I look forward to campaigning to defend our hospitals, schools and pensions – and to working to secure direct investment to improve council housing.
I hope political representatives from all parties will now join with tenants and other interested parties in lobbying the Welsh Assembly and the Westminster government to secure a level playing field for council housing. This should provide the same level of debt write-off and gap funding that was on offer under the Tawe Housing privatisation scheme."


Anonymous said...

It is also important to note that the LibDem council in Swansea spent £1.4 million on its POLITICAL campaign to sell off council houses.

Working class activists responded by organising a series of DCH public meetings on council estates bringing people together to fight back. The support they recruited from the organised labour movement is inspiring and shows an alternative vision of "Fighting Unions" to the sight of the sychophantic new labour trade union bureaucracy. UNISON funded the sending of letters to every house and a 1/2 page advert in the local paper.

Anonymous said...

we love the council houses