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Successful High-Court Resistance in Central London!

Last Friday morning, the 8th of April, eight High Court Enforcement Officers, privately contracted bailiffs, struggled through blood and sweat for five humiliating hours in an attempt to evict a squat in Grenville Street, Bloomsbury. The building, in an upmarket area of central London, has stood empty for over ten years for the sake of profit, and been evicted multiple times over, while homelessness across the city increases.

Watched by a hundred supporters and interested locals, the bailiffs faced a mammoth task of attempting to get through the barricades whilst being cajoled by bystanders and facing the wrath of an ear-wrenching soundtrack comprised of babies wailing over Requiem by György Ligeti. The support for the squatters came quickly, was vocal, and from a broad spectrum of folk. The resistance was physical and militant, and after removing two doors only to find they were but a fraction of the way through the barricade, the bailiffs lost hope. Upon consulting the rather timid constabulary, they packed their bags and headed home, the shame (among other substances) visible on their faces.

A victory gathering was held, and much was said about how important it is to have such a triumph against unjust attempted evictions, especially in times like these, where the law is being constantly tweaked in favour of landlords. It shows that all is not lost just because the courts have ruled one way or the other, that people have the power to ensure they are not thrown out on the street simply because an owner wishes to leave their building empty.

 STAND UP WITH NAZRAH AND ISMAIL! NO PROPERTY DEVELOPERS IN NEWHAM HOUSING!

On Friday, Nazrah and Ismail, two of the most active members of the Focus E15 campaign, will be facing Newham Council at the Royal Courts of Justice in Central London, and they need your support.

Since coming to a Saturday campaign stall in November 2014, looking for help resisting their family’s eviction, Nazrah and Ismail have worked tirelessly to support other families in Newham and beyond going through housing struggles of their own.  They have lived in Newham for over 6 years and developed strong ties and support networks.

In that time, with their three young boys, the family have experienced their own high court bailiff eviction and been in constant conflict with Newham Council and the Home Office about their housing, right to work (as a teacher and teaching assistant, respectively) and Asylum claims.

On Friday they will be appealing Newham Council’s rejection of their responsibility to house the family, while challenging the role of the senior housing manager at Newham, who is also a board member of a property developer in the borough. The family are arguing that someone who makes a profit from property development, management and rentals, should not be in a position to determine the borough’s housing needs, or decide where families in need should be housed.

Join them on Friday to help keep the pressure on Newham Council!

Stand with Nazrah and Ismail!
No to property developers in Newham Council!

Central London County Court, Thomas More Building WC2A 2LL

 10:30am, Friday, December 4, 2015

Welcome to Eviction Resistance

To find support against the threat of eviction, contact a local group or we can help you set up your own.

Contact us at info[at]evictionresistance [dot] org [dot] uk, or on Twitter at @EResistance

Hear about the ER workshops on Facebook or on this blog.

Hackney Resists!

Upcoming Eviction Resistance Workshops

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Fridy 25th September 2015, time TBC @ Soas University, Thornhaugh Street, WC1H 0XG

Outline of the workshop:

1. How to send the bailiff away peacefully. And why! How to use this moment for the best long term results

2. Practical steps to build up strength as a community, to defend your neighbours and community

3. Where do we go from there?

You don’t have to be a SOAS student to join us: come, learn, share your knowledge and ideas with us, and build up bonds and community strength with the locals :-)

https://www.facebook.com/events/1462968897366855/

Sunday 27th September 12.30 -17.00pm @ St Barnabus Church Fosters Hall, St Barnabus Road, E17 8JZ

Have you ever experienced eviction from your home or seen what eviction does to people’s lives?

Do you want to defend yourself from eviction or get involved in practical solidarity action?

Come to our next Eviction Resistance Workshop! We are starting an Anti-Eviction Network in Walthamstow. Children’s corner for under 12’s available.

You don’t have to be a local resident to join us: come, learn, share your knowledge and ideas with us, and build bonds and community strength with the locals :-)

Share widely!

* * * * * Program:

At 12:30, before starting the workshop and discussions, we will watch SI SE PUEDE: a very inspiring documentary about how people have organized and resisted evictions in Spain for the last 8 years since the beginning of the Spanish housing crisis (250 local anti-eviction groups at the moment!). As well as videos of eviction resistances in Walthamstow.

The workshop itself will start at 2pm, and we will speak about:
1. How to peacefully demonstrate against evictions and keep people in their homes
2. How to best support someone throughout the whole eviction process, until a long term solution is found.
3. How to organize further against evictions in Walthamstow, now? Several evictions have been stopped in Walthamstow and people have been re-housed adequately as a consequence. Keep up the good work!

https://www.facebook.com/events/1521749048115842/

Join the Eviction Resistance Network page to be updated on future workshops and events: https://www.facebook.com/groups/766223116837670/

 

 

 

 

Eviction Resistance workshop in Hackney, the ball is rolling!!

Another great workshop, this time in Hackney, with Reclaim Hackney, DIGS, and some other groups and individuals. These people are amazing and I’m really looking forward to seeing how they get on with setting up a phone network and resisting evictions. And to keep on working together: more workshops, more documented eviction resistances (when everyone involved is happy with that), more shared knowledge!

Once again, whilst doing this workshop we might have created opportunities for more workshops. And even better: people in Hackney spoke about organizing their own workshops too. We’re all up for helping them out when they start doing it. The ball is rolling: we won’t stop until every single tenant knows their rights and knows what to do when threatened with eviction!

Eviction Timetable, have a look!

We have written this little explanation with a housing barrister:

https://evictionresistance.squat.net/online-resources/eviction-timetable-what-happens-when/

What happens when in the eviction process.

Eviction Resistance workshop in Walthamstow, what a success!

Last Sunday we did an Eviction Resistance workshop organized by local residents and Unite Community.

More than 20 people came. We managed to dispel the mystery and intimidation that the words “eviction resistance” carry, and by the end of the 2 hours workshop, all felt confident that they could face bailiffs and support other people in these situations. They will be given each others phone numbers and email addresses, and will be telling each others when evictions happen in the area: an actual local Eviction Resistance group is born :-)

30 minutes after the workshop, everyone was still there and the air was buzzing with enthusiastic conversations. The vicar had to kick us out by inviting us for a beer next door.

They also decided to have another meeting, in the form of a film screening this time (SI SE PUEDE), where we will be invited to do a workshop again. It should be in the beginning of August. There should be more people there, as well as people from the Walthamstow Private Renters group, who couldn’t make it this time because they had a meeting at the exact same time.
We were told: “Do the exact same workshop. It was great!”

We have now also been invited to do workshops for groups in other boroughs. ER workshops are taking off!

Next workshop: Walthamstow, this Sunday (5th July), 4-6pm

Share and join the Facebook event !

Outline of the workshop:

1. How to resist an eviction

2. Practical steps to build up strength as a community

3. Waltham Forest council housing policy

4. Where do we go from there?

Organized by some Walthamstow residents, with Unite Community and the Eviction Resistance working group of the Radical Housing Network (including Focus E15 Mums, Sweets Way Resists, etc).

Message from Waltham Forest Unite Community: “In Waltham Forest we have now defended two households from being thrown immediately on the street by unscrupulous landlords and let the council know that every abuse of housing need must be tackled. Many local people were concerned for the families and visited them to offer support, so we promised a workshop to follow up these events. Please share this invite widely. Eleanor”.

You don’t have to be a resident of Walthamstow to join us: come, learn, share your knowledge and ideas with us, and build up bonds and community strength with the locals :-)

People Power Doesn’t Wait to Vote in Barnet!

The response to the call-out for Juliet on Monday was truly amazing! More than 1000 of you shared and tweeted the blog, and dozens more wrote to the local MP and councillor in less than 2 days. And today we saw the results. Massive thanks to everyone who came out to Barnet and braved the torrential rains, as well as those that sent emails in support.

First, Juliet, who had been discharged by Barnet Homes along with her four kids, was offered a three bedroom house in the borough. She hasn’t been able to see it yet, but without our voices online and protesting outside Barnet Homes she wouldn’t have been made the offer. However, while Juliet’s offer was a great success, the dignity finally afforded to her family must be a human right for all, and not the result of a public outcry.

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So at 4pm we decided to blockade the A1000, London’s main commuter road outside Barnet Homes’ offices, to protest the wider patterns of social cleansing across London. We’ve seen families being pushed beyond the capital and put through immeasurable stress, just so that companies like Annington Homes can bulldoze good houses to make way for luxury flats.

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Following the blockade we marched through Sweets Way and broke Annington’s undemocratic injunction against political protest on the estate. This injunction should never have been granted in the first place. And since we were walking around in the road with banners anyway, we thought: ‘Why not break that injunction while we’re at it?’

So we did. Then we went back to our occupied social centre (which will be two months old on Friday), drank tea and discussed the day’s events. We also got to meet lots of new faces who had responded to the call-out online and, having felt a bit of what people power can achieve, were all the more committed to getting involved in the campaign.

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Today we had a partial victory – on a day when, if we hadn’t come together to fight, a family would be at risk of being thrown out onto the street. In the days ahead, with our growing numbers and profile, we are sure to have more victories as we fight alongside other Sweets Way families that continue to be moved around like furniture.

Tomorrow, some of us will vote, some of us may not, but we’ll all be here together on Friday, fighting for our homes and for a London that is truly a city for all, and not only for those who can afford the kinds of properties Annington is destroying Sweets Way to build.

If you want to get involved, pop by the social centre and say hello this weekend as we celebrate two months of occupation!