NHS staff with children, who have been threatened with imminent eviction from their homes at Chase Farm Hospital, have been given a last minute reprieve from the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust and had their tenancies extended from the end of March to 31st July, following a concerted campaign by staff members and Joan Ryan, Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Enfield North. Controversially this offer has not been extended to all other members of staff affected as those without children have been informed that they still must vacate their premises by 31st March.
Residents were informed of the situation in a letter from Andrew Panniker, Director of Capital and Estates at the Royal Free, which was received on Thursday 5th March. The NHS staff currently living on the site and Joan Ryan will continue their campaign to ensure that all residents are treated fairly and that they have at least until the summer to find other accommodation.
Joan Ryan, Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Enfield North, said:
“This development is a small but welcome concession from the Royal Free and shows that fighting for what is right is always the right thing to do. It is unbelievable that anyone would think it appropriate to evict staff and their children from their homes during the school year. However, this new agreement should be extended to everyone and it is unacceptable that many frontline staff living on the site without children have not had the July deadline offered to them as well.
Members of staff do not deserve to be dealt with in such a cavalier fashion. The Royal Free needs to take a long, hard look at how it treats those who are doing such an important job and who have lived on the site for many years. They need to understand that London is in the midst of a housing crisis and many Chase Farm Hospital residents have been unable to find affordable, local housing to buy or rent as a result.
I will be writing to David Sloman, the Chief Executive of the Royal Free, on this matter and I will continue to fight to ensure that all residents have at least until the end of July to find alternative accommodation.”
Picture courtesy of the Enfield Advertiser