Tag Archives: Resonance

DAFT POLICY ON ROUGH SLEEPER ENCAMPMENTS

Camp

The recent EVICTIONS of homeless people living in vans and caravans from Greenbank, Easton and an ENCAMPED PROTEST in July on the council’s doorstep on College Green has focused attention on BCC’s homelessness prevention and provision services. As well as its new draft policy proposal on van dwellers and rough sleeper encampments.

As The BRISTOLIAN recently highlighted, a private for profit company, Social Impact Bristol Ltd is to commodify and make a profit from homeless people through a SOCIAL IMPACT BOND.

So it may not entirely be a coincidence that the recently launched DRAFT POLICY ON ROUGH SLEEPER ENCAMPMENTS is proposing to wholly outsource homelessness provision to St Mungo’s. An organisation that is intimately involved with Social Impact Bristol Ltd. and will be paying interest to the ‘high net worth individuals’ that have invested in it.

Bristol is seeing increasing numbers of people BECOMING HOMELESS, with some taking control of their own living conditions by squatting, living in vans, caravans and tents and refusing to pay exorbitant rents to landlords.

Sadly far too many are falling through our social safety net and ending up on the streets. Against this backdrop, a policy proposal that would seem to originate from the DEPUTY MAYOR’S OFFICE seeks to coral all rough sleepers into a ‘pathway’ through St Mungos. Encampments, even if deemed “low impact” with no anti social behaviour complaints, are only going to be tolerated for a maximum of 3 months and then dwellers will be forced into a “pathway”.

Whilst Marvin has been jetting off to Asia to seek international finance at a Green Growth seminar, there are people who are living environmentally LOW IMPACT LIFESTYLES that are going to be directly affected by the Draft Policy proposal on Rough Sleeper Encampments. A policy headed by Tom Gilchrist, BCC Gypsy and Traveller Liaison Officer, who has publicly stated he “wants to see everyone in bricks and mortar”.

How does this draft policy proposal fit in with Marvin and Deputy Mayor Asher Craig’s public statements about inclusivity, sustainable living and other corporate drivel?

Many homeless people refuse to engage with St Mungo’s, citing reasons of chronic drug dealing, serious substance misuse issues, violence and theft within St Mungo’s hostels. St Mungo’s own outreach workers state that they don’t have the capacity to deal with the number of homeless people, and admit that St Mungo’s hostels are DANGEROUS AND UNSAFE for those that do use them.

We ask why would a draft policy proposal that comes under the remit of the Deputy Mayor be calling for all homeless people to be CORRALLED into St Mungo’s when St Mungo’s doesn’t have the capacity or the safe conditions to properly assist some of the most vulnerable people in our city?

It wouldn’t have anything to do with providing a financial investment return to those high net worth individuals that have invested in Social Investment Bristol Ltd would it?

WEALTHY CASH IN ON THE HOMELESS

WEALTHY CASH IN ON THE HOMELESS

The SICKEST PLAN YET for helping the street homeless in the city has been quietly launched by the Reverend’s ‘Housing Czar’ Paul “Wolfie” Smith and the team of bureaucratic scumbags running the council’s housing department.

We hear that the council has quietly handed a contract called a SOCIAL IMPACT BOND to a brand new consortium – Social Impact Bristol Ltd (SIB Ltd) that’s been set up by charities, St Mungo’s, Second Step and Bristol Drugs Project – to support 125 street homeless over the next THREE YEARS.

The devil, however, is in the detail. Because SIB Ltd is funded with a LOAN from Resonance, a “social impact investment company” and Resonance, in turn, obtained the cash for their £112,500 stake in SIB Ltd from “HIGH NET WORTH INDIVIDUALS” seeking a return on their investment.

These investors will get this return when SIB Ltd achieve certain carefully listed “OUTPUTS” or targets from their homeless clients and are rewarded with CASH by the council. SIB Ltd then use the cash to repay Resonance’s loan with interest. This will be passed on to the “high net worth individuals” so that they receive the all-important “RETURN ON INVESTMENT”.

This sicko scheme, marks the start of the financialisation and securitisation of street homeless people for profit in Bristol. It has already been tried by St Mungos in London and been deemed a “SUCCESS“! For who?

Will it be a similar “success” in Bristol and usher in a new golden age of PROFIT to local high net worth individuals directly from homeless misery? And how many homeless clients/victims will be FORCIBLY MANIPULATED through this system designed to make a profit for the wealthy?

Is this the best we can do?

RED PANTS INVESTS IN SURREAL ESTATE

Rough SleeperBCC offers venture capitalists 3-6% profit out of its Property Fund for the homeless

Bristol’s homeless are now so thick on the ground that you can’t go past a public park without seeing shabby tents inhabited by those turfed out by housing cutbacks and ever-rising rents.

HRH Lord Ferguson’s response to this is to hand £5m into a joint property purchase fund with an organisation called Real Lettings – consisting of Resonance (a fund/asset management company), and St. Mungo’s housing association/homeless charity.

Big Society Capital, the government’s private investment fund will then invest a ‘matching’ £5m into this property fund’s purchases. These homes will then be rented out to 70-80 households of the ‘unintentionally homeless’, consisting of 80% families and 20% singles.

These new deserving poor are given no more than 2-3 years with St Mungo’s to “move up through the homelessness pathways” and earn the ‘privilege’ of renting independently in the private sector. Their progress presumably being sustained on zero-hours minimum wage jobs?

All this is contained in a public document, ‘Executive Summary of Agenda Item 7’, signed off on 3 November by HRH and rubber stamped by his ‘cabinet’: court flunky councillors Gollop (Con), Cook (LibDem), Radice (Green), and Massey (Lab). The Council’s intention – as written – is to ‘support homelessness’ (sic), by joining the Real Lettings’ national scheme as outlined above.

Much of the document is filled with cost projections, risk management tables and colourful graphs, with sub-headings such as ‘sensitivity analysis’, ‘capital appreciation’ and ‘cash yield’.

And a ‘net target return’ of 3% plus profit is anticipated for the investor, even after the Council, Resonance and St. Mungo’s have taken their cuts. It is explained that this route will be ‘significantly cheaper’ than lodging the homeless, as at present, in private B&Bs.

It is also disconcertingly stated that The Fund is an ‘unregulated collective investment scheme’, which disqualifies it from protection normally offered by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Big Society Capital is chaired by Ronald Cohen of pensions collapse fame, who along with hsome friends in 2000 disappeared with the pensions of 544 long service workers from British United Shoe Machinery (BUSM). In total, £81 million vanished from three pension funds: Dexion, BUSM, and USM Texon… All faster than you could say Abracadabra.

A comment by Ashok Kumar MP on the unresolved scandal involving Big Society Capital’s chairman is worth quoting in full: “I think these people need flogging. I feel so angry on behalf of decent upright citizens robbed of their basic human rights… These are greedy, selfish capitalists who live on the backs of others.”

But of course, having such a person at the helm investing in a local homeless fund for profit will not be bothering Lord Red Pants or his sycophantic team.