BHA meeting minutes 07.05.13

Minutes of Brent Housing Action meeting, 7 May 2013

  1. Carolyn (Camden resident and member of KUWG) outlined her problems in dealing with Camden council. Her son is doing a 3 year apprenticeship in Portsmouth and she is being made liable for bedroom tax. Apprenticeships should be treated the same as students and be exempt.
  • Advised to contact Camden Unison and local councillor
  • Carol to contact RMT branch sec where son is doing apprenticeship
  • Robin to give further advice at KUWG meeting
  • Agreed to collect various stories to post on website (with identifying details removed) Carolyn to write short précis of her situation. Red Room, Hannah Bewley, CAB & Navigators could be approached to help collate stories.
  1. Training. Advice consortium of CAB, Law Centre, BPTRG has funding for training. BHA members should participate so that we can be an informed network and provide peer support. Training to be end of June tbc.
  • Ann to advise on dates
  1. Nic has produced a letter to Network Stadium “Important notice: your benefit advice is rubbish”.
  • Agreed (if Nic agrees) that we would blow it up big and present it to Network Stadium HQ as a press stunt on Monday 20th May at 11am, meet at 10.30am Wembley Park stn.
  • Sujata to organise large version and contact press.
  • Need to find Network Stadium resident who has received letter to attend.
  1. Finance. £200 donation has got us started.
  • Agreed to use Trades Council bank account for now. Graham and Sarah to ask Dave Statham, treasurer
  1. Main leaflet
  • Agreed to change first line to “Are you a social housing tenant affected by benefit cuts”, add dates of future meetings – 21st May, 4th June, 18th June etc to leaflets, plus a call to organise a meeting on your estate. Sujata to communicate changes to Kierra.
  • Graham to photocopy leaflets to be ready for Saturday 11th May (Brent Fightback leafleting 11th May in Harlesden re NHS demo. Meet 11am at Jubilee clock).
  • Robin to ask Renters group about producing equivalent leaflet for private-rented sector which will be hit by benefit caps and cuts
  1. Gladstonbury festival takes place on 30 June in Gladstone Park.
  • Sarah to request stall.
  1. Counihan campaign. Legal advice still being sought. Campaign is mobilising on the possibility that eviction may be attempted. All encouraged to attend the following:
  • Meeting with Brent housing officials at Granville Plus, 80m Granville Road, NW6 5RA, Monday 13th May, 10am.
  • Protest at full meeting of Brent Council, Town Hall, Wembley HA9 9HD, Wednesday 15th May, 6.30pm.
  • Public meeting, Bin the Bedroom Tax, No to benefit cuts, The Albert, 1-5 Albert Road, NW6 5DT, Mon 20th May, 7pm.
  • Possible eviction from 15 Rose Gardens, Ealing, W5 4JU. Monday 27th May. Call Jim to confirm 07958 157392.
  • National meeting of anti bedroom tax campaigns (Liverpool, Newcastle etc), The Albert, 1-5 Albert Road, NW6 5DT, Sun 23rd June 1-3pm.
  1. Estate mapping.  Counihan Campaign already active in South Kilburn so agreed to target the following initially:
  • Marley Walk/Waterford Way/Griffin Close – Willesden. Tim from Marley Walk Res Assoc is keen to organise a meeting. (Ken, Sujata)
  • Roundwood (Sarah, Roger, Pat, Kierra)
  • Chalkhill (Carol, Martin, Robin)
  1. Labour support. Welsh Harp ward has passed a resolution in support of BHA and this will be debated at GC. Possibility of Labour organisers helping us with estate mapping.
  1.  Brent multifaith forum has invited BHA to speak at their next meeting on Tues 14th May, 3pm at Wembley Fire Station.
  • Robin and Paul to attend.
  1. 3 events this weekend. Anyone who can attend them should feel free to represent BHA.

Benefit Justice Summit takes place on 11 May at Central Hall, Westminster.  Counihans will be speaking.

  • Pat and Ken to attend.

Open House conference

  • Robin to attend

Unite Housing workers “No evictions” event MAY 12th, 2:30 – 6:30pm

@ Richmix, 35-47 Bethnal Geen Rd City of London, London, E1 6LA

  • Paul to attend
  1. Genesis Housing have sent pre-emptive “eviction notices” to residents in Haringey in anticipation of them running up arrears due to benefit cap. (More details here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/may/01/benefit-cap-eviction-threat?INTCMP=SRCH)
  • Haringey Housing Action Group are serving an eviction notice on Genesis, all welcome to attend at 8am on Thursday 9th May at Genesis head office, 25 Chapel St, Edgware Rd, NW1 5DT. (Edgware Road stn)
  1. Google group
  • Sujata to set up. Contact to be sent an invitation to join: paperjunky@gmail.com
  1. Chairing meetings
  • Robin to continue as chair
  1. Future meetings. Since the meeting Robin has agreed with Ann that we can keep to fortnightly meetings at 7pm at Mencap. If on any date the Mencap room is unavailable we can move to the Trades Hall next door.
  • Next meeting Tuesday 21 May, 7pm at Mencap.
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