Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Vol 35 no. 19. 3rd August 1972

Housing Now!

Housing Now!

Can't hear you cartoon

Last Saturday night a group of concerned citizens, many of whom happened to be young and hairy, smashed open doors in a block of flats in Vivian Street. That night, and every night since they have slept on the floor creating, publicity for their cause and awaiting a decision from the relevant authorities about the future of the flats.

The block in question had lain vacant for most of this year. Various bodies, in particular a group associated with the Salvation Army, have asked the council and the Ministry of Works if they could take over the flats. They have been turned down. The lack of will from the authorities would have ensured that these basically sound properties lie idle indefinitely. Now they have been 'liberated' it is certain that official action will be taken to enable people to live there.

If 'disruptive protest' and 'direct action' ever needed vindication then the outcome so far of this 'liberation' is ample. That this type of protest works, while writing letters and articles, making deputations, even demonstrating publicly have failed, is proof enough of its worth. Here is one case where the ends, at least as far as have been seen, have justified the means.

The matter hasn't ended. There are houses all over the city lying empty while the M.O.W. or the Health Dept., or the Education Dept., decide which bureaucrat is most deserving of a comfortable resituation.

These departments must consider themselves warned, that they had better get back in touch with the needy people in this city. If they cannot see through their red tape and beyond their self interest, they are going to have more and more decisions taken out of their hands, and rightfully given back to the prop.