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Video from the protest: Focus E15 mums take their petition for social housing to City Hall


The women of the Focus E15 Housing For All campaign try to deliver their petition to Boris Johnson on Friday:

As many people will know, the Focus E15 women are a group of young mothers, classed as homeless, who have been fighting for decent social housing for all. They've been trying to convince Newham council and the East Thames housing association to find them decent social housing in London.

They are concerned about being pushed into the highly unstable, unaffordable private rental sector. They are also concerned that to beat the benefit cap, Newham council will send them to live miles away in supposedly cheaper towns. That would remove these young mothers from the families and friends who they rely on and who can provide all-important free childcare when the women go into training and work.

On Friday, they took their petition for decent social housing (which has thousands of signatures) to City Hall to present to Boris Johnson.

The women handed their petition to another individual who was sent down. Later, as you'll see in the video, they tried to take a signed greeting card into the building to give to Boris. No sign of Boris again. And this time, nobody else would come down either. The guy on reception told the women that the person who'd previously come down wasn't available. Once they'd handed their card to the person on reception, a call was made upstairs to tell people they could come down to get the card.

Here's a little bit on Boris' pledges to build more housing.

The Focus E15 mothers' campaign continues at pace. The issues that they are doing so well to publicise will not go away. They will need to be dealt with. Slapping Asbos on homeless people will not be the answer the housing crisis, either.


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