Overcrowded housing

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sandbach99 | 22:28 Wed 14th Dec 2005 | News
11 Answers

I am not sure which section to ask this.

I have been told that on a new estate in a nearby town a lot of the houses have been bought by people believed to be Chinese in origin, each house, 3 bedroomed semis, now houses 8-10 Polish men who are working here. Some of the houses have beds in the kitchen. The Chinese take rent off each person.

Should I report what I have been told to any authority on the grounds of health and safety? if so who or should I ignore the situation and hope no-one gets hurt or killed if a fire breaks out. If the situation is reported would it make life harder for the Poles, ie would the Chinese take it out on them.

Before anyone says anything this is NOT a racist question, I have only quoted the nationalities as it could effect the answers, I am not sure where these people work but this area is not very far away from Morecombe Bay, I do know some Poles do a very good job delivering booze to the off-licences in the area.

What would other AB's do?


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Do you have any evidence for this? Sounds like an urban myth to me? 'new estate in a nearby town'? sounds a bit vague doesnt it? Ive heard similar claims many times before - get the facts and re-post.
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The estate is opposite a park, it has been built on a car park no longer required by local company. The Poles were in a local pub on Saturday night enjoying a cabaret night. the Landlady is wellknown to me, she did have a pub near my daughters home. She is, like me, concerned about the Poles, the landlady spoke to some of the Poles who spoke very good English. It is admitted that they did not seem bothered about their accommodation but I am.
It is known that a local large delivery company has a very large number of Polish drivers as does the local bus company.
This is not a urban myth.
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Not an urban myth then! Its good that you are concerned about the welfare of these people but i would be very careful about getting involved. These Poles sound like decent, hard working people and i'm sure they can look after themselves - i am guessing what they left behind was a lot worse than they have now. I think the best thing to do is perhaps get talking to these people and find out their intentions,. If they are no good then report them but other wise i'm sure you have concerns in your own life that you could be looking after.
There are certain rules and regulations for the number of people who can occupy a house and the person to speak to is the Enforcement Officer in your local Council.

i would suggest doing what gary baldy recommends - talking with the poles to see if they are being overcharged for what may be overcrowded and possibly not very good living conditions. if they are OK with their situation then so be it, but if they are being ripped off, someone should offer them support.

yeah, i agree with gary baldy and metagirl, please don't contact the council until you have spoken to the poles directly involved, as you could be just stiring up a hornets nest for them which is not required or wanted. Talk to them, if they feel hard done by or in trouble, offer your support and try to help them. But don't try and help them without knowing if they really need or want it.
Sorry but best to mind your own business. I am sure you have enough problems without dealing with others problems besides AnswerBank of course.
I would either try to speak to them direct or don't get involved. Is it council housing BTW? My dad came over from India in the 1960s and shared a house with loads of other men. It meant the rent was very cheap and it allowed everyone to save their wages. It was a very common thing to do and it meant people could establish themselves without having to go on benefits.
So far no-one has touched on the possibility of the exploitation that may be taking place. (Often the case when migrant workers are involved as they may be reluctant or unable to seek help from the authorities). The case of the 'Cockle Pickers' in Morecambe bay comes to mind, when they were too scared even to seek the assistance of ambulance staff due to fear of getting into trouble. Dare I mention income tax, national insurance and the like? Oh well, I already have.
Personally I would leave them alone.If they've had the wherewithal to make it from Poland to here then I'm sure they don't need any help with where they live.Exploitation is rife everywhere, but you can't save the world and I'm certain that the last thing these obviously very hard working people want is for a local council enforcement officer to visit them and if they are overcrowded, issue them with a notice which will erquire some of them to move out. In effect , at the moment they have somewhere, if you interfere even goodheartedly they might end up with nowhere, besides 10 people in a 3 bed house isn't exactly extravagently overcrowded. You should visit West Belfast where I grew up ( 8 people in a 2 bed) if you think that's bad.

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