That was a truly massive achievement!
In a rare show of political unanimity, on Tuesday night the four parties of Bristol City Council voted 100% to endorse our Ethical Lettings Charter. This lends enormous political support to our campaign, and means the Mayor will be writing to 4000 landlords asking them to sign up!
And well done! Because you made it happen.
100 ACORN community campaigners from Easton and beyond rallied before the meeting last night, joined by supporters from Shelter and others. Resplendent in our ACORN colours and singing loudly, we were impossible to ignore. And before the meeting ACORN activists like you have engaged political leaders, landlords and letting agents, collected hundreds of signatures and letters to councillors, sent in personal stories and taken action against bad landlords. And that citizen activism is what makes change.
Few community or campaigning organisations achieve things like this. Many are 100% volunteer based, with little experience, and little funding. Those that get funding are told they'll lose it if they campaign. That's not good enough. We aspire to use a union model, bringing together lots of communities (and time, and lots of small donations) so that collectively we can maintain and share an infrastructure and staff that can help us achieve more.
Initial funding for our Bristol community organisers has run out and not quite enough members are chipping in yet to cover the wages. That means we can’t engage other Bristol communities.
(You don’t need a Paypal account, just a debit card, or you can contact us to pay another way)
So, what next? There’s a long way to go to really make life easier for Bristol’s 43,000 renters. The decision goes before a Scrutiny Committee before becoming policy. We need to hold Bristol City Council to it and more importantly, campaign for landlords and letting agents to sign up! Please join our next renters meeting to decide where the campaign goes - click here to RSVP.
We're getting closer to the elections now, and we’ll be working hard to make sure we get every vote counted! But regardless of who wins, we need organised, powerful communities to hold them to account. So, please remember to click here to chip in £1 a week to keep ACORN organising.
That was a big step forward Tuesday! Thank you.