The young Black woman’s neighbours were convicted of public order offences and racially aggravated harassment, but L&Q failed to evict them or to rehouse the young Black woman. She has spent the last five years staying with friends and family and sued L&Q for negligence after discovering that a previous black tenant had been hounded out of the flat by the same neighbours. She has been awarded £31,000 in damages after a judge found that she had been misled by assurances that there was no record of antisocial behaviour at the property. For the full article see the Guardian
L&Q boast on their website that “as a charitable organisation, our role goes beyond providing homes and housing services. We are a long-term partner in the neighbourhoods where we work. The ongoing involvement in our communities is as important to us as it is to you […] helping our residents to lead independent lives, secure employment and transform the fabric of our neighbourhoods.” This turns out to be cynical window dressing.
Meanwhile Unite the Union’s survey (Unite) of workers report L&Q posted a record surplus last year of nearly £350m. but when their surplus fell this year to £190m – still a record-breaking bumper surplus – L & Q slashed staff bonuses against a backdrop of year-on-year pay freezes and paltry pay rises. By contrast, the Chief Executive, David Montague’s annual salary is near £350,000 (DailyTelegraph). An investigation by Inside Housing found that low pay in the sector has fuelled housing problems among social housing workers themselves – some have even reported homelessness and rough sleeping. The majority of social housing workers spend more than a third of their income on rent alone, with nearly 1 in 10 spending more than half of their income just to keep a roof of their heads. Not surprisingly, the survey found an epidemic of work-related stress among staff who feel burned out, undervalued and poorly paid. L&Q is reported as “one of the most aggressively entrepreneurial of the new breed of housing associations”, and it seems where Black Lives matter little.