Branch Secretary :

Grenfell families still homeless

Branch members support protest at Kensington Town Hall


Many families that survived the fire at Grenfell Tower face Christmas in hotels and only a small number have been permanently re-housed as over a hundred protestors gathered outside Kensington Town Hall to demand action from the council on Wednesday evening and a delegation of branch members joined them.  Four in five face Christmas without a home despite Teresa may's pledge that families would be rehoused within three weeks.


Speakers exposed the failure of the council and brought solidarity, including a heartfelt speech from Kate Osamore, Labour MP for Edmonton.


Suzanne Muna: Unite will stand by community


Suzanne Muna brought solidarity from the Executive Council of Unite the union (and LE1111 of course!) and echoed many speakers in expressing concern at the narrow focus and lack of community involvement in the conduct of the official inquiry. She assured the crowd that Unite would stand by the community if it became necessary to run a parallel “peoples inquiry” to expose the truth. 


GRENFELL TOWER FIRE APPEAL – UPDATE From Steve Turner (Assistant General Secretary)
Since our solidarity appeal was launched in the days following the terrible tragedy at Grenfell in June, Unite employees, branches, and regions, have donated over £115,000. 
Our members at Grenfell have asked us to pass on their thanks to you

Your money has done what we set out to do, it has helped our members and the wider community of Grenfell rebuild their lives. The members you have supported have been incredibly touched by the support they have had from their union.
How the appeal has been spent
Over half the money raised has gone directly to Unite members who lived in Grenfell and to the families of our members who died. The fund supported their immediate practical needs in the weeks and months after the fire, it paid for storage space to distribute clothing and toiletries. In the more recent weeks our fund paid for the funeral clothing for an entire family who had to bury their 12-year-old daughter. And as we have moved into colder weather your money has paid for warm winter clothing and shoes for many who are still in need.
The appeal has also been spent on vital professional trauma counselling for our members and their families. Money from the fund has been set aside to pay for further counselling. We are expecting that as members get rehoused and settled they will be ready to see a counsellor.
Your union is supporting legal representation to 59 residents in what will be a long road to justice for the survivors and families who have lost their loved ones and/or been traumatised by their horrific experiences. Members have also had legal support with housing, welfare, and employment cases.
A Unite convenor in the construction sector also saved the job of a Grenfell member who had been disgracefully sacked for taking time off from work sick.
Unite had 20 members living in Grenfell and 13 survived the fire. Unfortunately, seven of our members died that night, some alongside other members of their family. And some of our members that did survive lost members of their family. They all lost friends in the close community that was Grenfell.
To date one third of our members have been permanently rehoused, one third have been rehoused temporarily and a third are still living in hotels



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