Monthly Archives: March 2013

Early Day Motion Tabled – Write to your MP

An Early Day Motion has been tabled calling for a repeal of the new anti-squatting law. Please write a letter to your MP or use our template below urging them to sign it. If you don’t know who your MP is you can use TheyWorkForYou website to find out. Dear “Your MP Here”, As your constituent I am writing urging you to sign an Early Day Motion recently tabled that recognises the damage being caused by the new squatting law (Section 144, LASPO) which was brought in on September 1st 2012. The link to the Early Day Motion is here: […]

40 top lawyers sign Guardian anti-squatting law repeal letter

The letter reads: It is just over six months since the offence of squatting in a residential building came into force. At the time the offence was proposed, government sources claimed it was necessary as the law “does not support police acting when there are squatters in someone’s home” and that “there are no powers to throw them out”. The signatories to this letter include many of the 160 lawyers who wrote to the Guardian (26 September 2011) pointing out that, as a matter of law, those statements were wrong, as such powers did exist and had done so since […]

The Evening Standard Hates Romanians

Here we go again. Yet another foul, bordering-on-racist article in the Evening Standard, who quite clearly hate all squatters and it seems all Eastern Europeans – especially Romanians. Friday’s article on new figures released via an FOI request submitted to the Metropolitan Police (our first request was turned down when we were writing our report) claims that 45% of all squatters arrested in London, since the introduction of new legislation which criminalised squatting in residential properties last September, are from Romania. It is unsurprising that migrants who will not have English as a first language are being adversely affected by […]

Squatting law causes more problems than it prevents

Vyvian Raoul says squatting law causes more problems than it prevents, in a guest post for the New Interntaionalist blog. Our report – The Case Against Section 144 – shows that not a single, solitary squatter arrested under the new law was found to be displacing a homeowner…

Court case won by former Friern Barnet Library activists

The Friern Barnet Library Activists have moved on to a new project in Enfield Borough in an attempt to fight austerity, homelessness and unjust squatting laws. The community activists who were previously caretakers of the Friern Barnet Library, are now residing at the Arnos Family Resource Centre (ARC). They won their court case against Enfield Council on the 11th of March 2013 at the Barnet County Court. Many of the activists arrived at court to defend the case being brought forward by Enfield Council for possession of the property. They were accompanied by several members of the Friern Barnet community […]

Open Letter to Mike Weatherley MP and The Argus

Your attitude to private property is that of the land owners that belong in the “Medieval wasteland” you invoke, along with your Cabinet’s front bench…

Squatters Occupy Bloomsbury Hotel…

Squatters Occupy the Ivanhoe Hotel in Bloomsbury to Protest Against the lack of Affordable Housing!

SQUASH launch new report in Parliament

The event marked the launch of SQUASH’s 6-month report and impact analysis of section 144 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act (LASPO). It provided an opportunity to discuss what the MP’s, Lords, lawyers and academics could do to help, and highlight Mike Weatherley’s Early Day Motion (EDM) looking to extend criminalisation to commercial premises. Speaking were SQUASH, Crisis, Tuckers Solicitors and the Simon Community.

“The Case Against Section 144” Press Release

Press Release For immediate release Campaign to repeal new squatting law launched in Parliament Entitled ‘The Case Against Section 144’, SQUASH (Squatters Action for Secure Homes) are launching a new report and campaign in Parliament today. The report’s findings suggest the major concerns regarding criminalisation that arose during the government’s consultation process have been proven right, with homeless and vulnerable people disproportionately affected. No arrests so far have been for squatters displacing anyone from their home, which does suggest that the Criminal Law Act 1977 was sufficient for dealing with squatters – as predicted by many legal experts. The report […]

Homeless Man Prevented From Squatting Dies

We are gutted to bring the extremely sad news that media reports suggest that homeless man Daniel Gauntlett is the first known person to die because of the new squatting law brought in last September which criminalised squatting in residential properties. There may be more people who have been affected in this way but he is the only person we know of for sure. He passed away last Saturday. The news comes exactly 6 months after the introduction of the new law. Daniel Gauntlett tried to find shelter in a boarded up empty bungalow, a residential property under the new […]