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Tower Block Safety

After receiving a tip-off that a private accommodation block had the same cladding that led to the Grenfell fire disaster Newcastle members demanded that it be removed. After initially denying that it was the same flammable cladding the owners only came clean after ACORN raised awareness and support for the campaign by petitioning outside the block and going on the radio to expose them. Even then the owners said that the cladding was safe. Of course nobody was convinced by their explanations and disgusted by their disregard for the safety of their tenants ACORN members continued the public petitioning until they agreed to take it down.

Two years on from their initial victory over cladding, ACORN members organised into local groups in tower blocks in the east Newcastle confronted their landlord Your Homes Newcastle on major issues of fire safety in Spring 2019. Over 15 fires were reported in one tower block over the first months of 2019, and fire services suspect arson. After a hard-fought campaign of direct action, petitioning and accountability meetings where members forced YHN’s Managing Director to negotiate, they won a major victory by getting thermal CCTV cameras and sprinklers installed to stop the spread of fires in the tower blocks.

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