Earlier this year, my fellow Labour councillors and I stood on a manifesto (page 23) that was clear in our approach to this scheme. I appreciate how, in this age when people are particularly disbelieving of anything politicians say, that it might be hard for some to believe we are still sincere in wanting to do want we said we'd do. But we are.
We are doing what we promised on many fronts and there's no reason we wouldn't stick to our word and do our best on this one. For example: we have already saved Sulivan Primary School; have cancelled H&F Conservatives' policy of selling council homes to property spectulators; we are abolishing home care charges for the elderly and disabled; have negotiated millions of pounds worth of extra affordable homes to rent and buy; are about to deliver new funding and support for local food banks and are putting the greatest ever number of extra council-funded police on our streets. We are also vigorously campaigning to save Charing Cross Hospital from the Conservative/Lib Dem government's demolition plans and have already delivered on a long list of the carefully considered promises we made in our manifesto.
After 22nd May 2014, when my fellow Labour councillors and I were elected to run H&F Council, we began discussions with CapCo about possible better ways forward.
It was my Labour colleagues and I that discovered what H&F Conservatives were up to with peoples' homes in our borough back in 2007. News on their plans for the Gibbs Green and West Kensington estates was exposed in 2008. We have consistently campaigned against all H&F Conservatives' housing sale and demolitions, making what was happening to social housing here in Hammersmith and Fulham into a national issue. We are not about to change our minds now.
The situation we inherited on the Gibbs Green and West Kensington estates isn't easy but we're making some progress and CapCo have consistently given me their word that they want to do the right thing by all the residents on the two estates. I hope we will have some positive news on possible ways forward early on in the new year and that we will be able to properly engage residents on all the possible options and what they want us to do on their behalves.