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Acorn members successful in first direct action against negligent landlord

A NEW branch of community union Acorn in north London achieved success with its first direct action today, which targeted a negligent landlord who had left a tenant living with toxic mould.

Picketers from Acorn’s Haringey branch gathered outside estate agency Homelink Edmonton, which does not manage the property itself, to present a letter of demands on behalf of Acorn member Hannah.

A manager at the agency spoke to the protesters, who said that they had received a written confirmation soon afterwards that the landlord would quickly carry out badly needed repairs.

The union vowed to keep up pressure on the landlord to ensure that all repairs are carried out swiftly.

Hannah said she was “very relieved to finally have some progress on getting our house safe. 

“Until Acorn union assisted me, it was a full-time job to stop the housing problems – even [getting them to] admit the house was unsafe and that it wasn’t due to ‘inadequate ventilation’ but them not doing their job. 

“We need people power to amplify the voices of renters so the landlords stop taking the cash and shutting us up.”

The successful action shows the power of the union, Acorn said, as it pledged to continue defending members and urged all renters to join to “project our collective power.”

A Homelink spokesperson said that day-to-day maintenance was handled by the landlord, not the agency, but confirmed that “after speaking with the landlord, a damp specialist has already been appointed and is due to install a professional ventilation system to solve the condensation issue.

“Thereafter, he will organise cleaners and decorators as required,” the spokesperson added. 

“We have a duty of care to all our clients and will always act in the best interests of tenants and landlords.”

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