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LCAP ends 2008 at RBS

December 23rd, 2008 · post by Edd · Make a comment

London Coalition Against Poverty, and sympathisers, occupied and disrupted the Royal Bank of Scotland yesterday. Dressed up as Santa Clauses, a group of people distracted the security guards while another group passed the security barrier and went upstairs to hand out flyers to RBS workers, including those on a trading floor. The flyers explained that, this year, city bankers will be getting large Christmas bonuses while four in ten children in London, and eight of ten in neighbouring borough of Tower Hamlets, live in poverty.

As one of those involved explained, “For the vast majority of us this Christmas will be more difficult than most. But the majority of bankers will again be receiving obscene amounts of money in Christmas bonuses and to make it worse it’s our money they’re getting this year.

“While the Government is giving them the means to pamper themselves for another year it is instigating welfare reform that will drive more people into poverty and turning a blind eye to the tens of thousands of people left homeless due to inadequate social housing.

“We need to stand up to the banks and the Government and tell them this is unacceptable.”

2008 in review

The protest marks a successful year for LCAP, who have been using direct action to win in ways that make a difference for the everyday life of ordinary people. For example recently on December 15th LCAP and residents of Alexandra Court, a temporary accommodation hostel in Hackney, marched to a local councillor’s surgery to demand immediate action. 25 people confronted their local councillor. They told her about the disrepair and unsuitable conditions that they and their families are living in. The Councillor committed to investigate the issues and to answer them within the month. In the group’s own words, “In 2008, LCAP has become a fully fledged organisation, mobilising around everyday concerns.”

And the future…

In 2009 the group will be hoping to grow, and already has two meetings planned for the new year. On January 8th  is a public meeting co-hosted by LCAP, London Social Forum and Newham 6th Form College titled, “The Olympics – what will be left when the circus leaves town?” and on January 10th LCAP will be holding a facilitation skillshare. For full details and more news visit LCAP’s website: http://www.lcap.org.uk/

There’s also an article that an individual involved in LCAP wrote for Last Hours #16 online here: www.archive.lasthours.org.uk/archive/articles/politics-as-unusual/

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