Saturday, 29 October 2011

OUT OF THE SQUATS AND ONTO THE STREETS

LONDON: MEET 6:30PM MON 31ST HIGH ST. KEN
MANCHESTER: MEET 5:30PM MON 31ST OUTSIDE TOWN HALL
TBC...

Friday, 28 October 2011

CALL TO ACTION




The Government want to sneak through the criminalisation of squatting, which will be voted on in Parliament this Tuesday 1st November 2011.

Over 95% of responses to the ‘consultation’ on squatting were against the criminalisation.
Despite this, the government is still going ahead with their proposals - effectively bypassing democracy.

SQUASH have tried engaging with the democratic processes but despite overwhelming support to not criminalise squatting we have been ignored.

Our only rational response now is to call for people to TAKE ACTION. We have been forced into this position. See you on the streets!


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MONDAY 31st OCTOBER : CALL OUT FOR A MASS SLEEP OUT


MEET AT HIGH KEN TUBE STATION 6.30PM - EVENING STANDARD HQ - NORTHCLIFFE HOUSE, 2 DERRY ROAD W8 5TT.
CRITICAL MASS (BIKES) MEET AT WATERLOO BRIDGE 7PM

BRING SLEEPING BAGS!

if you would like to propose an event to hold during the sleep out
- teach outs, comedy shows, face-painting, music, cardboard house making, trick or treating, pumpkin soup kitchen
- get in touch, or just make it happen! remember, we're going to be there all night, so bring things to keep everyone warm and busy!

TUSESDAY 1st NOVEMBER: EN MASS REGISTRATION OF HOMELESSNESS

9am - Outside Westminster Housing Options Service, 101 Orchardson Street, LONDON NW8.
THIS ACTION IS TO SYMBOLISE THE POTENTIAL IMPACT OF CRIMINALISING SQUATTING ON THE ALREADY STRETCHED HOMELESSNESS SERVICES

THIS CALL OUT EXTENDS TO OTHER CITIES TO TAKE ACTION OUTSIDE THEIR REGIONAL HOMELESS PERSON UNITS WITH MASS SLEEP OUTS, SOUP KITCHENS, AND OUTDOOR ENTERTAINMENT.
FOLLOWED THE NEXT DAY BY A SYMBOLIC MASS REGISTRATION OF HOMELESSNESS.

WWW.SQUASHCAMPAIGN.ORG

Thursday, 27 October 2011

A positive look on squatting

video

Whatever They Say, Squatting Will STAY!



The session will also take place:

- TODAY (Thursday 27 October) at 4pm, OCCUPY LONDON, outside ST PAULS CATHEDRAL, London
- Saturday 29th October - Bradford, 1in12 Club, 7pm

Off Market Free School

Off Market has opened a Free School! 68 Dalston Lane, here's the schedule for the next two weeks:
 

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

WHATEVER THEY SAY SQUATTING WILL STAY

WEDNESDAY 26TH OCT: LONDON, RATSTAR 8PM
THURSDAY 27TH OCT: ST. PAULS OCCUPATION, 4PM
FRIDAY 28TH OCT: MANCHESTER, OKasional CAFE 6PM
SATURDAY 29TH OCT: BRADFORD, 1in12 CLUB, 7PM
might be a good opportunity to get together and talk about wot to do regarding the fuckwits (see previous post).

GOVERNMENT SEEKS TO MAKE SQUATTING IN RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS A CRIMINAL OFFENCE

DESPITE AN ASTOUNDING 2165 OUT OF 2217 RESPONSES RAISING CONCERNS ABOUT THE CRIMINALISATION OF SQUATTING IN THE RECENT PUBLIC "CONSULTATION", GOVERNMENT MINISTERS ARE RUNNING WITH IT ANYWAY AND SEEK TO MAKE SQUATTING IN ANY RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY A CRIMINAL OFFENCE. THEY PLAN TO SLIDE THIS IN WITH THE LEGAL AID, SENTENCING, AND PUNISHMENT OF OFFENDERS BILL. 




they are a bunch of fuckwits and their democracy is a joke. this is really bad and we need to take action.

 FROM SQUASH:
Government 'bypasses democracy' to sneak through anti-squatting laws

Housing charities, MPs, squatters, property consultants, activists, lawyers and artists have accused the government of sneaking in an amendment to the Legal Aid and Sentencing Bill announced today by Justice Secretary Ken Clarke to “make squatting in residential buildings a criminal offence”. Campaigners say the amendment will not take into account the thousands of consultation responses submitted earlier this month and will not add any further protection to residents.

Over the past 3 months the government have been undertaking a consultation process entitled “Options for Dealing with squatters” which came to an end on October 5th. Squatters Action for Secure Homes (SQUASH) have accused the government of “ignoring the consultation” by rushing through anti-squatting laws only 3 weeks after the consultation has ended.

The amendment states that making squatting in residential building a criminal offence will “end the misery of home-owners whose properties have been preyed on by squatters”. However strong legislation already exists to protect residents from having there home squatted. Last month 160 leading legal figures wrote an open letter which was published in The Guardian explaining that under Section 7 of the Criminal Law Act 1977 it is already a criminal offence to squat someone’s home.1

SQUASH spokesperson Paul Reynolds, said:

“ The governent is ignoring the results of its own consultation which shows that the criminalisation of squatting in empty residential properties will do nothing to protect residents who are already protected by strong legislation. This amendment will criminalise the homeless in the middle of a housing crisis who use squatting as the last remaining option to keep a roof over their heads.”

John Mcdonnell, MP for Hayes and Harlington said:

“By trying to sneak this amendment through the back door the government are attempting to bypass democracy. There was over 2,200 responses to the consultation on squatting so there is no way the government could have acknowledged all the evidence”.

 

FROM THE FUCKWITS:

Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke has announced a raft of tough measures to better protect people from intruders, dangerous criminals and excessive no-win no-fee legal costs.

He set out plans for the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill as the latest in a series of radical moves to reduce reoffending, improve sentencing and reform the legal aid system.

The amendments include measures to:

Make squatting in residential buildings a criminal offence to end the misery of home-owners whose properties have been preyed on by squatters.
Strengthen people's rights to use force to defend themselves from intruders in their own homes.
Give magistrates power to hand down bigger fines.
Ban the referral fees which have allowed middle-men to profit from encouraging others to make unnecessary compensation claims.
The new measures will be debated in the House of Commons next week and, if passed by vote, will be added to Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill which is currently progressing through Parliament. The full amendment notes can be found here.

If you are interested in continuing to receive updates on the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill, you can register on the MoJ website.


MoJ response to the consultation http://www.justice.gov.uk/consultations/dealing-with-squatters.htm

Saturday, 22 October 2011

Factory Squat Bristol in Court 26th October. Demo called.


The Factory social center in Bristol has received court papers for possession for next Wednesday the 26th of October. A demonstration to the courts has been called for that day. Meet outside the building at 12 noon in Portland Square.

Friday, 21 October 2011

WHATEVER THEY SAY SQUATTING WILL STAY!

October the 1st 2011 marked one year since the Kraakverbod made squatting illegal in the Netherlands. However, hundreds of people still squat and will continue to squat.


With squatting in the UK coming under threat, join us to hear 3 squatters from Amsterdam talk in several cities across the UK about squatting before the ban, resistance to the criminalisation and what's been happening since the Kraakverbod became law.

Sunday 23rd October - Brighton, Cowley Club 2pm
Tuesday 25th October - Bristol, Cave St Factory 8pm
Wednesday 26th October - London, Ratstar 8pm
Friday 28th October - Manchester, OKasional Cafe 6pm
Saturday 29th October - Bradford, 1in12 Club, 7pm

The talk will include;

-a brief history of squatting in the Netherlands,
-an run-down of the various attempts to criminalise squatting, the most recent campaign and what the Kraakverbod is,
-Anti-Kraak companies like Camelot, Ad Hoc
-what the speakers felt was successful in the campaigns and mobilisation before the criminalisation, what was not successful, and what's been happening since
- the consequences of the Kraakverbod for for housing general, cultural life, political activism and the squatting community

with some space for questions and discussions afterwards.

Where ever you are, see you there!

KRAKEN GAAT DOOR!







kraakverbod.squat.net

photos from Marien Van Os' flickr

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Audio recording from Sheffield Free School

SQUATTING AND AUTONOMOUS SPACES

Find out how groups in Sheffield are actively challenging the absurd abundance of empty buildings by reclaiming and redefining so-called private property. Squatting makes use of unused buildings to meet real needs such as for a home or a social space. Come along and discuss why it’s necessary and how you can you get involved.


http://indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/10/487033.html
http://sheffieldsocialcentre.org.uk/

ONE MONTH UNTIL COURT FOR GROW HEATHROW

On Thursday 17th November 2011, exactly one month from today, Grow Heathrow will be heading back to court. Despite no support from the local community, the local council and our local MP, the owners of the land at Grow Heathrow are going ahead with a third attempt to remove us from the site.
It makes no sense. We have tried negotiating  to come to some agreement from the start but they will now only let us speak to their lawyers. They have no plans for the land and as it is greenbelt land they can’t get planning permission to do anything. All that will happen is a return to a site where regular activities include car scrapping, car breaking and contamination of agricultural land. We will not let this happen!
What can people do to support us in the run up to court proceedings?
  1. Sign the petition for court – http://www.petitiononline.com/heathrow/petition.html
  2. Send a supportive testimony to info@transitionheathrow.com or to Grow Heathrow, Vineries Close, Sipson, West Drayton, UB7 0JG (Full list of statements so far found at www.transitionheathrow.com/statements)
  3. Follow us on Twitter @transheathrow. #defendGrowHrow
  4. Get down to Uxbridge County Court for 9.30am on Thursday 17th November for a big show of support outside the court.
As well as all this we will be launching a new photo campaign soon so keep checking our blog to find out how to get involved with this. Thankyou all for your continued support.

Spread the word. http://www.transitionheathrow.com/2011/10/one-month-until-court/

Monday, 17 October 2011

DALE FARM

Try and head over. Our struggles are most certainly connected.


UPDATE - EVICTION UNDERWAY - SUPPORT NEEDED
The Court of Appeal has just rejected the residents' right to a judicial review, which means that Basildon Council will be able to come on to conduct an eviction from now onwards.
We need supporters to come down as soon as possible to help resist this eviction. We need people to come willing to engage in civil disobedience as well as support residents and activists in resisting the eviction through non-arrestable roles. It may seem like a scary thing to do, but coming down to Dale Farm is one of the most important things we can do for the community here, and to protest the injustice that even the United Nations and Amnesty International have unreservedly condemned. This is a historic moment of resistance- let's do something.
The residents have nowhere to go. They are united in resisting the eviction, and we have been working with them to develop plans and strategies. Travellers in the UK are at the receiving end of state violence. The way the Dale Farm community is being treated is a form of ethnic cleansing which criminalizes a people and a culture, and it is vital that we come together in solidarity to resist it. We are ready to resist the eviction, and we need more people to join us and the residents as soon as you can come down. Bring a sleeping bag, food and resistance paraphernalia. (For a full list of things to bring, how to get here - only 30 min from London- and other important info, see http://dalefarm.wordpress.com/activity/ or call 07583621312).
In addition to getting supporters down to Dale Farm, we still need a lot of funds to cover the work we have been doing so far. Please donate at: http://dalefarm.wordpress.com/donate/

...

NEW SQUATTED EXHIBITION CENTRE IN TUFNELL PARK / HOLLOWAY

squatters have secured a building in north london, and have negotiated with the owners to present a temporary squat exhibition which will open to the public from wednesday

In response to badly biased mainstream media coverage, the threat of new laws criminalising squatting, and the dale farm eviction, a new squat exhibition will open this week to offer the public an alternative viewpoint and show the positive side of squatting, and its connection to providing solutions rather than causing problems.

In a perfect example of how squatting can be a positive experience, the organisers have held conversations and meetings with the current owner of the building and have not only negotiated a temporary stay with the opening of the exhibition to the public, but also the possibility of some rent-free space at a local theatre school to continue the exhibition on an 'official' basis.

The new centre can be found at 2-4 tufnell park road n7 0dl just behind the holloway road multiplex odeon.

The organisers are asking for artists, photographers and other creatives to donate work towards the exhibition, highlighting the contrast between the recent rising demonisation of squatting with a celebration of diy culture, a look at the history of squatting and positive images of successful squatted social centres. they are looking for photographs or art works on the theme of squatting, travelling and protest.
the exhibition will also focus on the stupidity of having empty buildings unused when homelessness is increasing due to the "austerity cut" assault on the poorest people in our society.
opening times will be announced shortly and more info will be available at
http://squattershousingactiongroup.wordpress.com/
and contributors can access the site before wednesday by contacting the current caretaker on O7721375374

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Against eviction and gentrification in St Pauls: for the defence of liberated spaces

From Bristol Space Invaders


We are people who live in or use the Factory Social Centre, the building on the corner of Cave Street and Portland Square. A company called the PG Group wants to develop the building we are occupying. They plan to turn it into luxury flats, offices, a cafe, an art gallery and a small health centre. Aside from the possible health centre, we don’t see their development plans as good for this area. Also, when all other information suggests that the NHS is cutting back on public outpatient nursing, we have doubts about what kind of heath centre it would be and if it will really happen.
We don’t want to be moved on and we don’t want this building to be developed. We are asking for your support.
We have worked hard since we squatted here a year and a half ago to turn this building into a home and into a space for free activities, creativity and political discussion. All of these things are under threat from this development. They are also threatened by similar developments in many other places.
We don’t believe that St Pauls needs more luxury flats and offices. On Portland Square alone there are three buildings full of empty offices. We don’t want to be removed in order to create more “beautiful” sterile vacant spaces. We see the PG Group’s proposal as part of a process that is changing our city – and St Pauls in particular – by making more places that are only comfortable for people with more money. This process – often called gentrification – pushes up prices and displaces existing residents, destroying the relationships that people have built with their neighbours and their neighbourhood. It leads to even more security cameras and police to stop people gathering in public space. We want this to stop.
The PG Group say that their aim is to “improve the environment of their community and, if possible, to make donations to charity.” However, nearly all of their developments are luxury accommodation – which is useful to only a small section of the “community”. For example, they developed the flats and serviced apartments on Portland Square. They were also part of the failed onedovelane development, which proposed building the second-highest skyscraper in the UK in St Pauls.
In addition to this, the main aim of the Grant Bradley Trust, the organisation PG give money to, is “the advancement of the Roman Catholic and Christian faith in any part of the world.” It is a religious, rather than a charitable, organisation. Despite what they say, the PG Group are a development company like any other – who just use some of their profits to promote their own beliefs.
The PG Group are trying to get us to leave voluntarily by holding out the promise of another building that we could use. So far all they have offered is a shipping container for storage and the use of some meeting rooms. We reject this offer.
We want to make it clear: even if they offered us a suitable building, we do not want to leave. We believe that, in this situation, accepting another building in order to vacate this one for development would be the same as supporting what the PG Group want to do. We do not want to help them promote themselves as ethical and caring as they continue to damage neighbourhoods. We do not agree with their development and we do not intend to cooperate with it.
We are squatting this building. We do not legally own it. However, we believe that buildings should belong to the people who use them and open them up for others to use together, not to those who only want to make money off them. Laws exist to protect the interests of the rich and keep the rest of us shut out. That is why, if we have to, we will defy them. We know that this means that we are likely to face violent eviction but we believe that resistance is essential. We have to take a stand.
We are staying where we are and we call for those who support us to join us in struggle – for this building, for free spaces and against eviction and gentrification.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

block the bridge, block the bill

the government is about to piss all over the NHS. meet tomorrow, sunday october 9th 1pm on Westminster Bridge...  http://www.ukuncut.org.uk/

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

CALL OUT TO CREATE AN ANTI EVICTION NETWORK

from Hackney Anarchist Group...



Housing is a major issue for all of us. Times are hard for people to put a roof over their heads, whether they are tenants, squatters or even mortgage buyers!
The national and local governments have shown their true ugly faces by threatening to evict families in which a member had been arrested during the recent riots. As if making council tenants homeless was a solution to anything… This was the quickest reaction ever from a council regarding housing, shame it was to evict people!
We say that everyone deserves a home, and a decent one!
When people are being threatened or actually evicted from their home, we should all react, resist and show solidarity in anyway we can. Evictions have to stop!
The idea is very simple: we are inviting you to create a network of people/groups that will be able to mobilise quickly in the event of anyone being evicted from their home in Hackney, whatever their housing situation is (council flat, housing association, squat, hotel, private…).
The meeting will be held on Saturday 15th of October, 2pm at Passing Clouds, 1 Richmond road, London E8 4AA(Dalston junction, Haggerston).
Let’s get together, discuss where we’re at in our local struggles and build a structure that will allow us to communicate efficiently so we can stop bailiffs and police from putting people on the streets!
The proposed meeting structure will be:
- a first part (one hour) where people/representative of groups will give a brief account of what they’re doing and updates on housing in hackney.
- a second part (one hour) for all of us to discuss the practicalities of creating an anti-eviction network.
We are hoping that this will be a good tool to fight back for ourselves and our homes.
HAG is also organising a public meeting/information night about Housing on the 25th of October 7pm. Please contact us if you would like to speak about Housing in hackney on the day, any contribution is welcome.
Thank you and hope to see you all! Please forward to any group/person you think would be interested.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Squatters extend solidarity to the TUC

After Plan A fell through early this morning, we occupied 101 Liverpool Road, a building to our knowledge disused since July. We then discovered that, coincidentally, the TUC were also planning to use the space tomorrow for steward prep work. We made immediate contact and the TUC expressed enthusiasm for working together against the tories. We have offered our full logistical support and have given them the following letter:

After some discussion with --------, we in occupation at 101 Liverpool Road would like first to reassure you that we have every intention to assist and facilitate the TUC stewards' planned use of the building over the next two days. We will work with the stewards so that they can have full access to the building as the need and we'll even make tea and coffee.

Signed,

The Occupiers


The following excerpt was taken from a blogpost on Occupy Manchester, and outlines briefly why its important we work alongside groups like the TUC.

Posted on September 29, 2011

This weekend we are all in Manchester to march against the Conservative Party conference and to occupy part of the city to take a stand against the cuts and policies of a government no one voted in.

Once again, every aspect of our lives is under attack by a Conservative government. Under the smokescreen of crisis and austerity working class people are seeing their wages stagnate, their rents rise and the last scraps of the welfare state being taken from them and sold on.

And, once again, the conservative government is planning to criminalise squatting and with it student, workplace and shopfront occupations. This would criminalise people’s ability to house themselves in the middle of a housing crisis, put the tens of thousands currently squatting out on the streets and on the doorsteps of homeless charities already overworked and underfunded, affect the rights of tenants, and would be a serious assault on the use of occupations as a form of protest.

Manchester Meeting at 2PM - Location Announced!

After some minor technical difficulties, including an owner with a fox-shooting gun, a jeep and some hired meat heads backed up by the pigs, we have found a resting, meeting and resources space for the weekend.
It can be found at the (former) Castlefield Centre, 101 Liverpool Road, Castlefield. It's opposite the Museum of Science and Industry, check the map...


View Larger Map

Occupation Phone Number: 07521906793
See you later.x.


.xx.