Housing… NO; Social Housing- I am a council tenant.

Born into a council bed and breakfast held together by mother dearest aged 19, and the father aged 22? (yea ok i forget how old my parents are..can you blame me?) 1 temporary accommodation later and a sibling later (the brother) and were wound up in a racist cul-de-sac in west London, eventually moved on into that detached mouldy condemned house i spent most of my remembered childhood-teen-hood in, riddled with eczema and plagued by asthma and chest infections that came every 2 weeks, nothing much in that house has changed, my daughter & sisters are consistently ill, the house is still “damp” and the council still do botch job repairs because of an inadequate budget… even after they were meant to strip back the 2 layers of rotten plasterboard and treat the brickwork and re-roof, 1 new kitchen & bathroom later, the mould is still rife, that fight of mother dearest’s rages on, i just don’t understand why she hasn’t handed them they keys and taken a private rented accommodation like the rest of the immigrants are doing? Guess she loves her detached privacy that allows mother dearest the freedom to curse shout no actually scream her bad breath in close proximity’s of ones nose… enough to cause one to think “one day i will smack this woman who is my mother and knock her teeth out so her breath doesn’t smell this bad anymore!” which she manages so calmly to do whilst blasting Carmen Burana’s -O Fortuna and not burning the 8am fry up catering for ahh minimum 4 persons.

So now I’m cooped up in my lovely council flat, pre ordained to the benefit trap of social living and housing, and thanking that same lovely council that screwed up my health and childhood for allowing me to live in a damp free flat! That has only had one family live in it before me… i moved in and found £5 in the secret kitchen cupboard! SCORE!!

I’ve sat and written the complaint letters to the council, their complaints department, the local MP, and eventually the local ombudsman…who had to give an arm and a leg to get environmental health to come a survey against their own council! in the end the Legal Aid paid for a private survey to get the court case the only one i saw mother attend one court case which settlement was pre arranged and non negotiable, and as her solicitor put it you should be lucky they offered you that amount; you should accept it, you can’t fight the council in their own courts! was £12,000 an acceptable amount of compensation for 3 disrupted childhoods riddled with physical and mental health issues, and their mother who well…tried but doesn’t really see that she is in fact the biggest problem? Maybe i should sue my mother for making me live in that house…wouldn’t that be something! But by far the best thing after she split that compensation 4 ways giving my and my 2 siblings 2g each in a frozen trust fund, that my brother squandered on his moped aged 16, my sisters which sits growing interest and mine that i spent about £600 out of on expenses for my daughter after she was born…the rest is now in her name growing interest, as far as I’m aware… i wouldn’t be surprised if the psycho mother of mine had in fact spent it on her useless husband or god knows what else!?

I’ve heard it all, i don’t even know where to start with housing facts and detailing the red tape in this system, its worse than child protection and ties in to everything we are/have/do in life… who would have thought the roof over our head could keep up so caged in this system designed to screw me up the arse and keep me living below the bread line. 18th century government running a 21st century Britain!

I heard from a front line council worker that they have a new appointments system being rolled out in our council, through PDA style device which the head of IT couldn’t give a shit about whether it worked or not, and its seeing the workmen being sent out to property’s whose repairs have already been completed a week before, my mother is one of those baffled residents wondering why she isn’t receiving appointment letters and 4 workmen in 1 week to do the same job! This PDA system pays its staff by some kind of hour system, which makes sure through the jobs they are given they can’t top 40 hours to get the pay then need to survive which they got on the old pen and paper system that saw them earning 60 hours to survive, the workman went on to tell me how he will never get promoted into senior management as they employ their sons, best friends and neighbours dogs before the dedicated staff that do their dirty work, get a promotion or the chance to work on the higher paying jobs even though they are less hours! Whether this is done on purposely to cut costs in the short-term, or whether it is a genuine council cock-up with a new IT system, either way it is screwing the front-line staff who maintain the council homes we live in!  You can be sure that management and all their buddies get paid on time with overtime for the extra hours they have to put in to cover up this mess they have created by allowing this PDA system to take over good old pen and paper. My heart went out to this workman, he has his own issues to deal with bills to pay, and in this current economic crisis he has no option but to stay on being screwed by the council as the private sector jobs are few and far between and further more inconsistent.

I like to think i have an open mind good fair head on my shoulders, and that what i write is believable to those who read this blog, i know if i had read the majority of the posts in this blog id be a bit taken aback, but id totally understand; different life- different reasons- same outcomes- same system.

But i do love my council flat, if i lived through 19 years of hell and am enduring another 5 years before i get my break i will love these social walls i live in! I will continue to write, it drains me thinking and trying to get it out to you… even if sometimes it does feel wholly natural when it comes out! I don’t re-read, i run spell check and press publish… all from my four council flat walls! I really do hope it helps to read. X


1 Comment (+add yours?)

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    Oct 19, 2010 @ 17:05:31

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