West Hendon Estate, Barnet Non-Secure Tenants Open Meeting
Barnet Housing Action Group asked for livestream support for the evening, but the Council representatives did not like the idea of being recorded. They claimed that everything would be written down, but we preferred to have our own copy. The compromise was that the camera would be pointed down on the table and we would only have audio.
This evening was for the non-Secure tenants of West Hendon Estate and for them to ask questions. The room was big enough for 70 in the audience, unfortunately only about 25 turned up. At this time, 60 letters had been sent to residents to inform them that their flats were being repossessed. One of the audience members pointed out that one recipient was so upset she could not attend the meeting. The same may be the case of many of the people in the estate. They have been bogged down by false hope and lies to the point that they felt defeated. Citizens Advice Bureaus cannot assist and Legal Aid has been abolished.
If recording equipment had not been allowed, then the Council representatives could have said anything to make the non-secure or rather the temporary tenants feel better and reneged on their promises again.
The evening did establish that:
There is no legal definition and difference between a Temporary Tenant and Non-Secure Tenant.
Mike Freer MP for Finchley and Golders Green, had promised back when he was Council Leader in 2009
that 115 Non-Secure Tenants would become secure tenants, but it was never actioned.
Many of the people who are Temporary Tenants/ Non-Secure have been living in West Hendon Estate for a decade. Other estates have given secure tenancy after two years residence.
One who may still be living in West Hendon, by the time her block gets demolished, would be a temporary tenant for 16 years.
Comments from the Housing Activists of Barnet.
If you would like to learn more about the fight for secure housing, please check out their pages.
We need outreach teams
1 .We desperately need volunteers to door knock with us , the flats where residents have been called to court for repossession order hearings (West Hendon ) – we believe that some still are not realising that they will be evicted (in march ) and that they need to get their written objections in before their court dates.
2. We need a list of volunteers that are willing to come and support residents at court – Willesden County Court 9 Acton Lane NW10 8SB the cases are over a period from 17th to 25th of nov at various times morn and afternoon so if you contact me on here by PM or on Our West Hendon page we will be in touch with exact times for the dates you are available
– we especially would like people who have knowledge of housing rights/law on these days.
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