Diane Abbott was the star guest at a well attended public meeting at the Narborhood Centre (or whatever its called these days) on March 11th. It was organised by the Sydenham Labour Party. Here is their report:
Thank you for joining us at our recent public meeting. Cllr Chris Best introduced the meeting with an overview of housing in Lewisham and then Diane set out an analysis of the current housing crisis and a range of policy ideas to ensure we can provide enough affordable housing for Londoners in the future. These included restrictions on “non-doms” being able to buy up property and leave it empty, tackling rogue landlords and letting agents, finding ways to enable housing to be built at truly affordable rents, tackling rent increases and insecurity in the private rented sector and many more.
There was then a wide ranging question and answer session covering the idea of a land or mansion tax, the bedroom tax and welfare reform, council tax reform, garden cities, how to tackle empty homes, how rent control in New York has worked, community land trusts, the planning system and how to improve housing management and the need for politicians to take a long term view of housing if we are to make real progress and the qualities needed by the next London Mayor.
We are keen to organise more open meetings where we can debate issues of interest and concern to local people and generate a lively debate. If you have any speakers you would like to hear or topics close to your heart please let us know and we will try and arrange them.