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Safe as Houses: Private Greed, Political Negligence and Housing Policy after Grenfell

Wednesday 11 December 2019, 4.00PM to 5.30pm

Speaker(s): Dr Stuart Hodkinson, Lecturer in Critical Urban Geography, University of Leeds

As the tragedy of the Grenfell tower fire has slowly revealed a shadowy background of outsourcing, private finance initiatives and a council turning a blind eye to health and safety concerns, many questions need answers. Stuart Hodkinson has those answers. He has worked for the last decade with residents groups in council regeneration projects across London.

As residents have been shifted out of 60s and 70s social housing to make way for higher rent paying newcomers, they have been promised a higher quality of housing. Councils have passed the responsibility for this housing to private consortia who amazingly have been allowed to self-regulate on quality and safety.

Residents have been ignored for years on this and only now are we hearing the truth. Stuart will weave together his research on PFIs, regulation and resident action to tell the whole story of how Grenfell happened and how this could easily have happened in multiple locations across the country.

This talk will present the results of research on mixing social housing with private profits. Based on the study of regeneration schemes in London, Stuart provides a voice to residents' who reported cost cutting and had their safety concerns dismissed, foreshadowing the tragic events at Grenfell Tower.

Department of Social Policy and Social Work, 'Housing Inequalities' Research Theme seminar, hosted by Dr Alison Wallace, Centre for Housing Policy.

Location: Alan Maynard (ARRC) Auditorium, Alcuin College B Block, Campus West, University of York