Scrap the Bedroom Tax Defend Council Tax Benefit Nottingham press release over City court summons to tenants

For Immediate release
Scrap the Bedroom Tax Defend Council Tax Benefit Nottingham:                                       
Cathy Meadows 07913476905
 

Local campaign group calls meeting with Nottingham City Council over bedroom tax pre-court protocol failures. 

Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Scrap the Bedroom Tax Defend Council Tax Benefits campaign have requested a meeting with Nottingham City Council as a matter of urgency amid concerns that the Council are failing to follow the pre-court protocol for tenants hit with the bedroom tax.  They are concerned that the council is not engaging with tenants who are in bedroom tax arrears, not giving them the information they need, and not trying to make arrangements with them before taking them to court.  In the most recent example a tenant who is less than four weeks in arrears and whose arrears have been decreasing since January, has received a court summons for possession of their home from the council.

This is the second time the campaign group has requested in writing, a meeting with councillors, as well as previously making a verbal request.
 
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Notes for Editors
[1] The council are applying to the court for Possession Orders, which give them permission to evict residents who can’t keep up with Bedroom Tax and/or Bedroom Tax arrears payments.  Social housing landlords must follow a pre-court protocol.  Tenants have the opportunity to put their case at the court hearing but do not receive legal aid to fund a solicitor to represent them in court. 
 
To contact Scrap the Bedroom Tax Defend Council Tax Benefit Nottingham contact:

07521 569 622 / 0791 347 6905
defendcounciltaxbenefits@yahoo.co.uk
http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/450355785005204/
https://twitter.com/defendbenefits tweet us defendbenefits

Trade Unions Unite For Militant And Sustained General Strike Len McClusky Announces

In a genuinely historic move, every trade union in the UK has signed up to a sustained general strike against austerity which could begin in the next few days Unite leader Len McCluskey has confirmed.

Read more: http://johnnyvoid.wordpress.com/2014/04/01/trade-unions-unite-for-militant-and-sustained-general-strike-len-mcclusky-announces/

Anti workfare flying pickets rock Salvation Army in Edinburgh

Anti workfare flying pickets rock Salvation Army in Edinburgh
Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Anti workfare campaigners swooped on four Salvation Army shops in Edinburgh on 3rd March, blockading them all and turning away customers and a delivery lorry. Salvation Army managers were visibly rattled as a giant banner proclaiming IF YOU EXPLOIT US WE WILL SHUT YOU DOWN blocked the entrance to their shops.

Read more: http://edinburghagainstpoverty.org.uk/node/127

UCU strike and NCAFC

ucu_strike_2014Members of the University and College Union, UCU (the largest trade union and professional association for academics, lecturers, trainers, researchers and academic-related staff working in further and higher education throughout the UK), are joined with Unison, Unite and EIS on strike today for fair pay. Visit: http://fairpay.web.ucu.org.uk
for details and live updates. The one-day strike will be followed next week by a third 2-hour strike of UCU, two having already taken place in 2014, action which is due to escalate unless there is negotiation. Local action is taking place at higher education organisations University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University. Local action has included pickets and ‘teach-outs’ in the city centre. At University of Nottingham, Unison and Unite members are not out due to local agreements.

Update: UCU members at Aberdeen, Bradford, East London, West of Scotland, Greenwich, Staffordshire, the Leeds College of Art, Manchester Met, Nottingham Trent, Robert Gordon and Queen Mary UL are all being called out on Monday 10th Feb for a full day strike because management has been docking a full days pay for a 2 hour strike.

Also see the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts for news of student-led actions and solidarity: http://anticuts.com.

Read also: Why the universities strikes are about more than just a ‘measly’ pay offer.

Twitter (good for recent updates across UK, including photos): https://twitter.com/#fairpayinhe

Previous:

UCU/Unite/Unison Higher Education sector – second strike day on Tuesday 3rd December 2013

Members of the University and College Union (UCU) along with Unite and Unison – the three largest unions in the higher and further education sector – will take industrial action over pay again on 3rd December 2013, rejecting a 1% offer in the knowledge that universities have made a huge surplus but staff pay has fallen in real terms by 13% since 2009. Locally there will be UCU picket lines at University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University involving teaching, research and teaching support staff (such as library staff). Local details: UCU Newsletter Issue 8 Nottingham Dec 2013

Details from National UCU: http://www.ucu.org.uk/6833

Extract from above link:

Tuesday 3 December strike remains on, but unions hope for more talks to break impasse

UCU said today (21 November 2013) it was disappointed that talks aimed at resolving a pay dispute in universities ended without a resolution last night.

The union said to avoid strike action across UK universities on Tuesday 3 December the employers’ representatives, UCEA, had to improve the 1% pay offer that was rejected by staff and which prompted strike action. UCU said it hoped there could be further talks before the 3 December action, but that the employers needed to return with an improved offer.

Previous action: Report of previous joint strike by UCU, Unite and Unison – the three largest unions in the sector (31st October) which has been followed by work-to-rule and other non-strike action:
http://nottingham.indymedia.org.uk/articles/6221

University of Nottingham Impact magazine (by students): http://www.impactnottingham.com/2013/10/staff-strike-hits-the-university-of-nottingham/

From UCU, justification for strike:

… employers had a combined surplus last year of more than £1.1bn, according to HESA, yet were prepared to offer a pay rise which covered barely one-third of the increased cost of living.

our employers are sitting on billions of pounds of reserves, around £10bn (even after pension liabilities) according to HESA, yet say they cannot afford to help staff whose pay has fallen in real terms by 13% since 2009.

our employers expenditure on staff has stalled, yet salaries for those at the very top have grown to a point where, as The Independent newspaper describes, ‘performance seems to have no influence on vice-chancellors’ bonuses and benefits.’

These facts and the employers’ intransigence are why the National Union of Students (NUS) have called for further, urgent negotiations between both sides with the aim of agreeing ‘a fair and sustainable settlement for higher education staff’. UCU and our sister unions have agreed to this sensible suggestion, but the employers have not.

See also: Nottingham Post articles about first strike day (After): http://www.nottinghampost.com/University-staff-united-pay-protest-strike-action/story-20019732-detail/story.html
(Before) http://www.nottinghampost.com/Staff-Nottingham-s-universities-strike-today/story-20015805-detail/story.html

See also: UCU Nottingham Local Association: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/ucu/current.php

Budget protest at Notts County Hall, from Nottingham Indymedia (which took place 13/11/2013)

Budget protest at Notts County Hall (13/11/2013), report from Nottingham Indymedia (posted 17/11/2013):

On Wednesday 13th November, Notts County Unison held a protest at County Hall against the cuts being proposed at Nottinghamshire County Council.

The council reverted to Labour control in May, but this has made little difference to the austerity programme in the county which continues apace.

Read more: http://nottingham.indymedia.org.uk/articles/6250

Bedroom Tax Protest at Nottingham Crown & County Court – Thursday 21st November 2013 – 1pm

Stop Bedroom Tax Evictions – Nottingham Court Protest

Nottingham Crown and County Court
Opposite Broadmarsh Bus Station
Thursday 21 November
1 pm – 1.45 pm

On Thursday 21 November, the court hearing will decide whether to grant a possession order* (see over) to Bedroom Tax tenants – paving the way for evicting some of the most vulnerable people in Nottingham

Our campaign has repeatedly asked Nottingham City Council to follow the example of Broxtowe Borough Council and agree not to evict tenants in arrears because of the Bedroom Tax. The city council has refused to do this and have now made a claim for possession against some tenants in Bedroom Tax arrears.

We need to show Nottingham City Council that the people of Nottingham are against Bedroom Tax evictions

Your presence is important. Come along and show your support.

Download flyer: http://nottssos.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/dctbc-11.pdf

Contacts: Find out more about the campaign
Phone: 07521569622 / 0791 347 6905
Email: defendcounciltaxbenefits [at] yahoo.co.uk
Web: http://defendcounciltaxbenefits.blogspot.co.uk
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/333226320103342/

Local group lobby Nottingham City Council in Clifton to refuse Bedroom Tax evictions

For Immediate Release – 30/9/2013

Contacts:
Cathy Meadows: 07913476905
Email defendcounciltaxbenefits [at] yahoo.co.uk

Local group declare evictions prevention protocol ineffective and lobby Nottingham City Council in Clifton to refuse Bedroom Tax evictions

Nottingham Defend Council Tax Benefits Campaign are lobbying Nottingham City Council to publicly announce that they will not evict people because of Bedroom Tax arrears and that a recent Nottingham Bedroom Tax Eviction Protocol[i] cannot prevent Bedroom Tax evictions.

The group have responded to the Evictions Ptrevention Protocol but they have not had a response from Nottingham City Council. Notices Seeking Possession have been sent by Nottingham City Council to residents in Clifton and St Anns.

The Lobby will be held at Clifton Cornerstone on Friday 4 October at 10.30am.

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[i] The Eviction Prevention Protocol was signed by Nottingham City Council, Nottingham City Homes, Nottingham Community Housing Association and ASRA Housing Group on 14 September 2013.

Previous release on 23/9/2013: http://nottssos.org.uk/2013/09/30/nottingham-bedroom-tax-eviction-prevention-protocol-does-not-prevent-evictions-but-shifts-blame-onto-the-tenant-press-release/