A public meeting today with public interest lawyers could represent the start of a potentially long campaign to get better living conditions for hundreds of families currently housed in three former office blocks on London Road between Thornton Heath and Norbury.
It is every local authority’s legal duty to provide emergency and temporary accommodation for the homeless, and it is also the law that no one should be accommodated in B&Bs that are not owned or managed by the local authority for longer than six weeks.
But in Croydon, with at least 2,500 families being accommdated in B&Bs or similar, many are forced to endure those conditions for months on end.
It is almost 10 years since Croydon Council took the leases on three 1960s office blocks on London Road – Windsor House, Concord House and Sycamore House. Between them they provide 338 generally one-bed homes – and save the council around £500,000 per year on the costs of B&Bs.
But almost from Day One, there have been regular reports of poor living conditions, over-crowding and dangers of fire risks in one of other of the buildings.
Now the South West London Law Centres are stepping in.
They are staging a meeting at lunchtime today, September 7, to hear from residents, past and present, of Windsor House, Concord House and Sycamore House – but also others who are enduring council-provided temporary accommodation.
“Anyone who is living in temporary accommodation in Croydon needs to be part of this campaign as demands are being progressed,” a SWLLC spokesperson told Inside Croydon.
The meeting is at the South Norwood Community Kitchen, Socco Cheta, 44b Portland Rd SE25 4PQ, until around 3pm.
The Law Centre says, “If you have any questions or would like to discuss contact Rhi from the Law Centre on 0208 208 5757 or at email@example.com.
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