By Joseph Willits
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Wandsworth Council has become the first to issue an eviction order due to the recent rioting, which has happened across London and much of the country. The eviction notice will be issued to a council tenant in the borough, due to their son’s involvement the disturbances in Clapham junction on Monday night. This is the first case of a council tenant being ordered to leave social housing, as a result of the recent looting and rioting.
Earlier today, the Communities Secretary, Eric Pickles, on BBC News, said he had spoken to all the leaders of councils where looting and rioting had taken place, and they, he said, “were very supportive of it.” Pickles continued that those facing eviction due to their involvement in antisocial behaviour were to be “deemed that they’ve wilfully made themselves homeless” and that there would be “no duty to provide a home under this basis”. He also said that he did not think that those who have broken the law in riots over the past few days “should be in the way of a law abiding citizen who could probably use that house in a much better way.”
This proposal, which already exists, particularly in the context of troublesome neighbours, is in the early stages of development, but Wandsworth Council’s proposal is likely to set a precedent. At present the eviction notice is only in the primary stage of a whole legal process, and ultimately the final decision will be made by a county court judge. Neither the tenant, nor their son can be named at this stage for legal reasons.
Wandsworth Council leader, Ravi Govinida said: “In Wandsworth, we are determined to take the strongest possible action against any tenant or member of their household responsible for the truly shocking behaviour perpetrated on local homes and businesses earlier this week.” His statement echoes the government and wider society, determined in seeking justice over recent events.