Enraged leaseholders speak out as the government votes to make them foot the bill

Grenfell Tower, London, UK
Sophia Purdy-Moore

On 28 April, the government voted to pass the Fire Safety Bill with no amendments. This means that leaseholders will continue to be responsible for covering the costs of historic fire safety hazards. The Bill proposes to improve fire safety regulations after the Grenfell Tower tragedy killed 72 residents in 2017. Although the House of Lords attempted to ensure leaseholders will be protected from fire safety costs, MPs voted that this should not be the government’s responsibility.

According to the BBC:

Thousands of leaseholders are currently facing large bills to pay for safety measures, including fire breaks, new balconies, safer doors and sprinkler systems.

A national ‘scandal’

Reflecting on the ‘disgraceful’ news, shadow justice secretary David Lammy shared:

 

Condemning the Tory government, MP Bell Ribeiro-Addy said:

Justice 4 Grenfell simply said:

Expressing solidarity with cladding victims, rapper Lowkey said:

Expressing disbelief at the situation, he added:

Leaseholders facing ‘bankruptcy’

Explaining what the proposed Fire Safety Bill might mean for the UK, Claus Vistesen said:

Stephen Mackenzie added:

Underlining the fact that most leaseholders are not able to cover expensive fire safety costs, another commentator stated that ‘buildings will remain unsafe’, increasing the potential for another tragedy:

Cladding victims speak out

Saying that he feels “utterly let down”, William Martin tweeted:

Expressing her fear of financial ruin as a result of the Fire Safety Bill, Jen shared:

Steph Pike said:

The Leeds Cladding Scandal campaign group tweeted:

And the End Our Cladding Scandal campaign group shared:

The fight is not over

Encouraging cladding leaseholders and campaigners to “keep going”, Inside Housing deputy editor Peter Apps said:

Lawyer and leaseholder Liam Spender added:

Confirming that they “will keep fighting”, End Our Cladding Scandal tweeted:

While campaigners prepare to challenge the government’s decision to pass fire safety costs on to leaseholders, thousands continue to live in unsafe properties. Their only options at present are to run the risk of another high-rise fire or to face bankruptcy.

Featured image via the blowup/Unsplash

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