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Cllr Rabina Khan - leading the PATH Councillors' petition.
Cllr Rabina Khan - leading the PATH Councillors' petition.

PATH Councillors want fire safety answers from Mayor

TOWER HAMLETS PATH Councillors have launched a petition calling on Labour’s Executive Mayor, John Biggs, to undertake a number of measures to improve fire safety in the Borough.

Already the petition is gathering support at a rate of knot, with hundreds of individuals adding their name as well as several Tenant and Resident Associations (TRAs).

No one is suggesting that Mayor John Biggs is ignoring the issue. He has been out at a number of residents meetings in the borough since the dreadful news came through about Grenfell Tower. However, there is concern that the advice being put out – at least by Tower Hamlets Homes (THH), which manages the Council’s housing stock – is not backed up by the evidence which residents want to see. There are already widespread concerns about many aspects of THH’s service delivery, and residents are not being reassured by THH’s placatory statements about fire safety – they want to see the evidence.

Concerns are also being expressed by social tenants and private tenants in some of the Borough’s newer properties, which have been built to a relatively high density. Some social landlords have been able to provide concrete information to the Council about their cladding materials and safety procedures very quickly. Where a social or private landlord hasn’t provided any substantive response in a week, there have to be doubts about whether the material needed is available.

The full text of the petition is below.
To sign the petition, go to:
https://www.change.org/p/london-borough-of-tower-hamlets-call-for-fire-safety-inspection-on-all-social-private-rented-buildings-in-tower-hamlets
To contact Cllr Khan to ask her to raise your concerns, email:
[email protected]

Rabina Khan: Call for Fire Safety Inspection on all Social & Private Rented Buildings in Tower Hamlets

Following the tragic events of the fire that ripped through Grenfell Tower Block in Latimer Road (West London), it has become apparent that the issue of safety was one raised by resident groups to landlords and public authorities – just like in many parts of our country – these concerns fall on deaf ears until tragedy strikes.
For the preservation of human life and to prevent this horror from happening again, we call upon the authorities to do everything necessary to ensure public safety. This includes fire safety, community safety, anti-social behaviour, keeping communities clean from bulk waste, crime prevention, community policing and most of all listening and delivering on resident valid concerns. You don’t need to throw money away on consultants – just listen to residents and spend limited funds wisely.
We ask the GLA and HM Government to ensure that local authorities are not failing to do everything necessary to ensure that we never see such preventable horror, devastation and loss again in our communities and in our country.
We, in Tower Hamlets, call on Mayor John Biggs & London Borough of Tower Hamlets to carry out a comprehensive inspection, for fire safety, on all Tower Hamlets blocks and buildings and ensure that all Registered Landlords and Private Sector also carry out effective fire safety inspections of their portfolios.
Fire safety inspections are carried out by the London Fire Brigade.
The council or the housing association or private landlords are responsible for carrying out their fire risk assessment every year or two years. As long as the fire risk assessment is up to date and remedial works carried out according to it then it is sufficient under the Fire Safety Reform Act 2005 using the PAS79 approach of LFB.
We call for a review of current inspection criteria including fire testing of building and refurbishment material and the investigation of sprinklers to be installed into high rise buildings.
At least 12 people (at the time of writing this petition) have died, when a fire broke out shortly before 1am on Wednesday 14th June 2017, at Grenfell Tower in Latimer Road, West London. The tower was 24 storeys high and contained 120 flats.. It was home to between 400 and 600 people. More than 200 fire fighters tackled the blaze at its peak with more than 40 engines.
The Mayor of London described the Grenfell Tower fire as a “serious incident”.
Tower Hamlets Homes has over 22,000 homes consisting of tenants and leaseholders managing many homes, including many in blocks of flats and in tower blocks. The link below for current Fire Safety is available on THH but is not sufficient in light of the tragedy of Grenfell Tower.
http://www.towerhamletshomes.org.uk/My_Home/Home_safety/Fire_safety.aspx
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of this shocking inferno.
To the families and friends of lost loved ones and the injured, we offer our heartfelt condolences and sympathy. To those who miraculously survived, we give thanks for your wellbeing and assure you that we stand with you to get the answers to the questions being asked.  We ask everyone to sign this petition and to donate whatever you can, to charities and community groups working to bring relief and comfort to those who have survived with their lives, but have lost everything else.
Tarling Estate (West) Tenants & Residents Association
Cllr Rabina Khan (Shadwell – London Borough of Tower Hamlets, Group Leader of People’s Alliance of Tower Hamlets)

•Read more about it:
Grenfell latest: death toll may rise to 58
Biggs on tower safety: too little, too late?

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