It’s been another busy year for HASL. It’s exciting to see how we’re growing and how much we’ve achieved together this year. Despite our efforts, the housing crisis is undoubtedly getting worse but we are getting important wins, looking out for each other, building collective support and solidarity, and challenging the root causes of the housing crisis and poverty together.
Everyone in HASL gives their time for free. We are a group largely made up of people facing homeless and bad housing, so we organise HASL whilst struggling with housing and poverty issues – making our achievements even more impressive. We know that by struggling together and supporting each other we can fight for good housing for ourselves and everyone. We know this works because we’ve seen the direct impacts of our collective actions winning housing for people, getting people housed back in their community, and stopping bailiffs. As we often say to people ‘don’t struggle alone’. We want to do even more in 2016 and we hope you can join us! Come along to our regular meetings and lunch clubs to meet the group and organise together!
These are just some of the things we’ve been up to this year. It doesn’t include the numerous letters we’ve written to councils together demanding homeless appointments, advice and rights information we’ve shared, buddying at the housing office, legal workshops we’ve organised, and the vital support and understanding people give to each other in meetings.
A massive thanks to everyone who has been involved in HASL and everyone who has supported us!
We joined thousands of others from across London at the March for Homes and showed support for the Aylesbury estate occupation.
Town hall occupation to challenge Lambeth council’s social housing allocations policy which pushes homeless people into the private rented sector. We called for social housing not social cleansing!
Bailiffs were having a fancy ball – housing groups from across London disrupted it.
Our first HASL lunch club at Art Nouveau in Brixton
We buddied one of our members for days at Southwark’s Peckham housing office and finally got her housed. Some of the most aggressive gatekeeping we have come across and the beginning of our campaign at Southwark to put an end to this and the culture of disrespect there.
After a number of protests at the housing office and town hall with HASL and Lambeth Housing Activists, Lambeth council accept a full homeless duty for Gustavo. Later on in the year, with our support, Gustavo finally got secure social housing in his local area.
HASL is two years old! Birthday celebration and lunch club.
We joined the launch of the Oxford Tenants Union to talk about London Coalition Against Poverty (which we’re a part of) and how we organsie.
We ran a housing rights workshop with English for Action students.
Eviction resistance with Aminata stopping Southwark council evicting her from their own temporary accommodation.
We joined an ESOL and housing conference attended by ESOL teachers and students and by housing groups across London to discuss and plan how we can work together more.
Caught Southwark gatekeeping as someone was being unlawfully turned away. Supported the man and his young son to get the housing they were entitled to.
During a leafleting session, we met someone who was due to be evicted by bailiffs a couple of days later. We were able to point her to the local law centre Advising London to get legal support to stop the eviction.
Lunch club at Bike Curious, Elephant and Castle
Freedom of Information request research by HASL published on Novara Wire showing how councils are forcing homeless households out of London.
Summer lunch club with London Campaign Against Police and State Violence in Burgess Park
A week of leafleting outside Southwark’s Peckham housing office to talk with people, hand out Know Your Rights information and to challenge gatekeeping.
Antenna collective organised a benefit night for us at Brixton East.
Summer lunch club with London Campaign Against Police and State Violence and screen printing HASL t-shirts and bags!
We occupied Southwark town hall to demand Ruth and her family are housed back in Southwark.
We joined a panel at Right to Remain’s annual conference
Lunch club at DIY Space for London and Homelessness rights training
We did a housing rights workshop with the Independent Workers of Great Britain Language Exchange class
Supported Aminata resist eviction from Southwark council’s temporary housing
Month of leafleting and support outside Southwark’s Peckham housing office to challenge gatekeeping
Month of leafleting at Southwark housing office continued
We spoke at Radical Housing Network conference
Shut down a Lend Lease Sales Event for Elephant Park (built on the ruins of the Heygate Estate) with our friends, Fight For Aylesbury.
Benefit gig at the beautiful Downtown squat
Eviction resistance at Dorchester court in support of Roz
London Coalition Against Poverty end of year celebration lunch club
Action to support ML challenge Lambeth council’s gatekeeping