Printed materials available on request - mail back for supplies and if you would like to help with stalls to build the march.
Urgent action is needed to address the housing crisis in Oxfordshire. More and more people cannot afford to live and work in Oxford. According to Affordable Oxford you need an income of £70,000 a year to afford a mortgage on a mid-price semi-detached house in Oxford. For many low paid workers buying a house is simply not an option, and are people forced to pay exorbitant rents and extortionate fees, unless you are one of the few to secure social housing - but that is now under attack. Homelessness is on the rise.
As well undermining living standards as people pour a greater proportion of wages into housing, the housing crisis is undermining our public services and local economy. Local hospitals cannot recruit and retain staff.
Many Oxford based workers have to commute with all the additional costs and environmental impact. We are expected to pay London prices but few places offer wages to reflect this. That is why health workers in Thames Valley are demanding parity with London NHS workers who get up to £5,000 a year to help with housing costs.
Underpinning the exorbitant rents and house prices is the shortage of council housing, thanks to Tory right to buy, and their preventing councils replacing houses bought by tenants. Many ex-council houses have ended up in the hands of buy to let landlords. There is no commitment to build the amount of social housing needed to provide affordable rents.
The result is a housing shortage that has forced up house prices, rents and homelessness. The new Housing Act is set to make the situation worse, with councils forced to sell off property, tenants forced to pay market rents, and an end to secure tenancies.
Wage rises are needed to help workers to continue to live in Oxford and to support public services, we need to stop the attack on council housing and demand the building of secure social housing to stop wages being eaten up by more rent and house price rises, and to ensure there is enough housing to prevent homelessness.
Supported by Oxfordshire UNISON Health Branch; Oxford City UNISON; Ruskin UCU; Oxfordshire NASUWT; Oxon and Bucks PCS; Oxford peoples Assembly; Oxford Momentum; Oxford Housing Intitaive