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Or is it unreasonable to complain about overcrowding in free accommodation?

(162 Posts)
SomeGuy Wed 29-Jul-09 22:56:50

Just caught end of local news, they had a feature about overcrowding in London council housing. They showed a council flat, not quite sure how big it was, but it was occupied by three generations of an Asian Muslim family (a couple were wearing jilbabs), 8 in all, but apparently they count as 6 1/2 people for overcrowding because children under 1 don't count (not sure where the 1/2 comes from).

Anyway my wife's response was 'if they don't like it, they should go back where they came from' (DW is an immigrant, and shared a bed with her sister growing up - they had 7 people in two bedrooms, some would sleep on mats on the floor), given that much worse/more cramped conditions are I'm sure completely normal where they came from. If DW's parents had they wanted a bigger house they'd have to pay for it, though they'd tend to spend the money expanding their business rather than home improvements.

They had an exterior shot of the flat, which is very prime real estate, central London, worth hundreds of thousands of pounds to buy, or several thousand per month on the open market.

Apparently Boris has promised to half overcrowding in 20 years, but it seems odd to me, obviously a family of 8 is fairly normal in Afghanistan/wherever (in large part because they don't see personal space as so important and so you can fit a lot of people in to a small place) but it really doesn't fit into central London, especially not when the taxpayer is footing the bill.

LaurieFairyCake Wed 29-Jul-09 22:59:31

the accommodation is not 'free' and of course they have a right to be housed according to their need.

Clearly being an immigrant doesn't stop your wife being insensitive to others needs.

2shoes Wed 29-Jul-09 23:01:23

nice post..................not

littleducks Wed 29-Jul-09 23:02:48

we should decide upon different overcrowding criteria dependant upon the colour of the applicants on the housing waiting list register hmm

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jul-09 23:03:19

um, council tenants pay rent if they are not on income support, employment support allowance, jobseekers (income-based usually) or carers allowance.

it's not free.

so your wife feels that because she had to go through that that everyone else should, too? and that if other parts of the world has slums like that, we should, too?

what a bitter, odd way to view things.

i'm an immigrant, too.

nickschick Wed 29-Jul-09 23:03:26

This is England and we do have some standard and its only fair and right that these standards apply to all- yes some people choose or have no option to be overcrowded for example those who own their own properties but being unable to buy your own home and living a degree of poverty does not mean you should have to sleep 10 to a bed.

Because your wife is an immigrant does not exclude her from being racist and offensive.

chegirl Wed 29-Jul-09 23:04:35

Wow you seem to have an awful lot of knowledge about the culture of Asian, Muslim Afganistanies.

What do you mean 'free' accomadation? When I lived in a council flat I had to pay rent.

Did the Asian Muslims from Afghanistan wear badges on thier jibabs saying 'I dont pay tax'?

What difference does it make where the flat is? Its not for sale, its a council flat. How much it would cost on the open market is irrelevant if its not for sale.

Oh - If you are not sure where they are from, how do you know what is normal there?

Are you waiting for a council flat? Is that why you are so upset?

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jul-09 23:06:38

By the same token, if your wife doesn't like how policy works here, how it is changed over time, then she's also free to go back to where she came from.

SoccerMum Wed 29-Jul-09 23:07:29

I saw that and I understand where you a re coming from. To be in social housing 100% funded by the state and to effectively have 8 in a 2 bed flat is irresponsible.

Why people continue to reproduce when they have no space is beyond my understanding. Surely everyone knows these days demand far outstrips supply and so having more children wont make hardly any difference to the wait of getting a bigger house.

Yes they have a right to be housed according to their need, but they also have a responsibility to ensure their family does not increase in size every year!

I would love more children, we cant afford it. End of.

GypsyMoth Wed 29-Jul-09 23:08:23 have gone waaaayyy down in my estimation. always thought of you as a reasonable person,with a fair minded approach!

not after THAT post though!!!

TheCrackFox Wed 29-Jul-09 23:08:46

It is not just council housing that is suffering from over crowding but also private rentals too.

It is terrible that children are growing up in these conditions.

Council housing is not free.


cheesesarnie Wed 29-Jul-09 23:08:50

show me free accomedation and i'll show you my arse(well i wont but...grin).

its called basic human rights.

youve said your wifes response.what is yours?are you superior too?

cheesesarnie Wed 29-Jul-09 23:09:07

i cant actually spell tonight

nickschick Wed 29-Jul-09 23:09:40

Well Im reasonably well educated and I have had an accidental pregnancy.

Its not for anyone to say that someone else shouldnt have any more children,I have a friend on benefits and trust me its not easy.

booyhoo Wed 29-Jul-09 23:09:53

what a strange OP

SoccerMum Wed 29-Jul-09 23:10:35

Children under 1 do not count at all...children from 1-10 count as a half a person, over 10s count as a whole person.

They explained that in the article.

famishedass Wed 29-Jul-09 23:10:43

we've had all of this before

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jul-09 23:11:13

So let's see here! Wow, where's the BNP when you need them?

We have here:

All of 'these people' who are overcrowded are in that state because they reproduced irresponsibly (certainly not because they may be living with extended family such as aunts, cousins or other non-immediate relatives).

All social housing is free.

All social housing is 100% funded by the state (tell that to shared ownership people who pay a mortgage, too).

None of 'these people' is a taxpayer and, of course, they're probably mostly Asian Muslims.


nickschick Wed 29-Jul-09 23:11:37

I dont actually think that children growing up in a cramped home is terrible perhaps its not 'ideal' but surely love and happiness isnt related to how many in a bedroom?

SomeGuy Wed 29-Jul-09 23:11:40

chegirl: I've spent a lot of time in Asia, I know what's normal, I've slept on floors, etc.

Just because the conditions are more crowded there, does not however make them slums/inhuman/whatever. People were on the whole much more cheerful than they are here. Acquiring more bedrooms really was not at the top of people's priority list.

GypsyMoth Wed 29-Jul-09 23:13:56

India is a different culture.

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jul-09 23:14:13

So what? I slept on the ground a lot because I like to camp, hillwalk and climb. How does that make it okay to say everyone should do it because, hey, I did?

I don't live in Asia, either. I live here.

I don't see why standards of living there must apply here. We're here, not there.

Do you think Sharia Law should apply, too?

SoccerMum Wed 29-Jul-09 23:14:36

I was gobsmacked actually at the rent my friend pays for her 3 bed council semi..more than my mortgage was!

Also - gone are the days when living in council houses meant no maintenance, she had to pay £90 to get a new fence panel put up when the wind blew it down.

dilemma456 Wed 29-Jul-09 23:15:18

Message withdrawn

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jul-09 23:15:37

This isn't about getting your own bedroom, it's about revising the definitions so that the bloody kitchen doesn't count as a suitable sleeping space for a child!

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