8:49 AM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago 20

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That’s what Ken Loach called for 10 years ago, because Shelter’s CEO Adam Sampson wanted employees to do unpaid overtime to win a government contract. What, you thought Shelter was a charity that housed the homeless? That stopped 40 years ago!

“Ever since Ken Loach’s classic Cathy Come Home highlighted the plight of the homeless, the film director and the charity Shelter appeared to be a match made in heaven. Loach’s angry, ground-breaking television play caused a national outcry, led to questions in Parliament and coincided with Shelter’s launch, giving its founders a publicity boost beyond their wildest dreams. Loach has called for donors to boycott Shelter”

He said “I won’t be able to support Shelter and I don’t think others should. Shelter has always been campaigning and critical of government, but it has become corporate and had its teeth drawn.”

“Mr Sampson said the decision – which was necessary to help it compete successfully for government legal services contracts – had not been taken lightly but after a period of negotiation with the trade union which failed to find any “realistic alternatives”.”  Click here

“Ken Loach, the award-winning film director, has urged donors to stop giving money to Shelter until a pay dispute at the charity is resolved.”

“Managers have demanded staff work an extra two and a half hours a week without additional pay – lost income worth an average of £1,700 per person over a year. They say the changes are necessary so Shelter can compete with such major private-sector companies as Capita in providing legal aid contracts.” Click here

Yes, you read that right, Shelter set itself up to compete for government legal services contracts with a private sector company! But tax-free Shelter, funded by donations, could not win the contract against a tax-paying, dividend-paying company without demanding that its employees do unpaid overtime.

Shelter only raised money for housing in the first ten years, according to this article from 1996.

“In 1966, appalled at the human suffering in Britain’s then extensive slums, a number of church housing trusts decided to launch a national campaign and chose a brilliant New Zealander, Des Wilson, to devise it and carry it out.”

“Des Wilson was 25 years old when he wrote a report for the church housing trusts urging that the campaign should aim to convince people that the housing situation “was out of control”, that Shelter would be a “rescue operation” in a national emergency and that the homeless were innocent victims. The campaign thus had resonance; it also had focus. The aim was to raise funds for housing trusts operating in four black spots – Glasgow, Liverpool, Birmingham and London. It had an evocative name, Shelter. And a few days before its launch it had a great piece of luck: Jeremy Sandford’s powerful documentary-drama about a homeless family, Cathy Come Home, was shown on television. As a result, the opening campaign – in which a charity for the first time used national newspaper advertising, generated editorial coverage by lobbying editors and journalists, and directly mailed bodies likely to be supportive – was an astounding success.”

“Shelter, too, has changed. It no longer needs to raise money for housing trusts. That gap was filled by the Government 20 years ago. It has replaced this activity with the provision of information, advice and advocacy through a national network of 48 housing aid centres.” Click here

So, even by 1976, Shelter had stopped raising money for housing, and had turned itself into a rival to the Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB). However, its fund-raising campaigns with their staged pictures of sad people still try to give the impression that they provide shelter. They are still trading on their reputation from over 40 years ago.

Do their donors and the people who leave money to Shelter in their wills realise that their money will just subsidise a mini Citizens’ Advice Bureau, combined with a left-wing lobby group that now has pretensions of becoming a mass movement?

A lobby group which supports disruptions to the private rental sector that will drive landlords out of business and increase homelessness – the very thing Shelter was set up to prevent? An organisation that tries to prevent the eviction of anti-social tenants and those who are in rent arrears?

An organisation whose new leaders contradict its own accumulated knowledge to mislead the public, and incite mobs of supporters to harass law-abiding businesses, and are therefore liars and bullies?

Yesterday Greg Beales, Shelter’s Minister of Truth, said: “The Landlord’s Alliance is a new group that appears to have been set up to make a number of false claims about Shelter Click here. One must have a heart of stone to read that without laughing, considering the false claims made by Shelter described in the articles listed above.

Under the new management Shelter seems to have lost its moral compass.  We need to make the general public aware of this, and call for another boycott to put Shelter back on track.


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Dr Rosalind Beck

9:37 AM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

Another excellent piece of work, AL. I really believe that most people do not understand that Shelter provides no shelter. This myth must be busted - and they must realise that they are instead giving money to a highly destructive and negative organisation which sides with tenants however bad they are, against landlords, however they good they are. Once this filters through to the general public, they can switch who they donate to. In that sense, the boycotting of B&Q and others will have an extremely positive effect - as the money will be going to the right place.

Incidentally, just as many will be donating to Shelter, unaware of their modus operandi, I learned this week that the NSPCC also awards huge salaries to its top bosses - around £170,000 was mentioned. I didn't know that and I will be cancelling my direct debit as I don't want my money disappearing into some fat cat's pocket so they can go on lavish holidays or whatever. I thought my money was for helping children who had been abused and so on. I worked for years in the charity sector and my boss believed we should all be on pretty low wages so that the money went where it should. That sort of ethos is clearly missing in many of these so-called charities - where there is a huge incentive to exaggerate and accentuate problems so that their roles and huge salaries become entrenched.

Larry Sweeney

10:14 AM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

An Exact analysis Al.
The main stream British media should hang their head in Shame. The constant villification of a segment of society ,ie Landlords who happen to be in the most part ordinary decent hard working citizens is deplorable. That the media do not take a step back and take a long hard critical look at this Shelter organisation , and that they fail to educate the Public about the fact that Shelter house nobody is surely proof that our media organisations are useless and do not merit serious attention. That a Landlord Organisation ,The Alliance has to scream and beg for Shelter to offer bonds for Housing benefit tenants to help them up the ladder and the Media seem to be conspiring with Shelter to hide this narrative is unbelievable.
The Landlords Alliance again demand that Shelter act as guarantor for Housing benefit tenants. The media prefer lurid headlines about evil landlords while ignoring the plight of tenants without the means to provide deposits.
A very sorry state of affairs when we have to get involved because such is the hatred directed at us, that the our voice and that of decent tenants is drowned out.
Shame on the British Media.


11:26 AM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Dr Rosalind Beck at 23/11/2018 - 09:37
Sorry to have to correct you Ros, but Shelter do provide homes - their executive committee who between them trouser £750k+ p.a. live in very nice homes all funded form the donation the British public make to them.

Tracy Conner

20:19 PM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

An easy boycott is to avoid buying your M and S festive food collection as 5% or over £3.4 mio has been given to Shelter in the last 13 years and people can also choose to donate now via their Sparks card.
I wonder if M and S would consider diversifying their support to a charity who supported the homeless in a more obvious manner after all these years? Must be time for a review?

Mark Shine

20:48 PM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

As always: very thorough work by you AL, but very sorry to say... I have not been overly impressed with some of the new NLA’s (aka Larry’s) tactics or typos 😂 to date... which as far as I can see have taken place primarily on Twitter. Like other LLs (I assume?), I feel some of the work (ie Tweets) may possibly work against LLs rather than for us. Thankfully a lot of the most incriminating tweets seem have been deleted in recent days it seems.

👆that said, I find myself still on the fence (a bit) as I’m not actually 💯% sure that my paragraph above is even fair on Larry as (1) am confident that his heart is surely in the right place and (2) perhaps some sort a public fight (or ‘show’) is sadly what is required to encourage the sensationalist UK media to actually take notice of the potential harm that is presumably quite unintentionally(?) being done to many participants in the housing rental sector (regardless of tenure) by HMG policies & some of one of their quango-esque pit bulls’ actions (Shelter)?

Chris @ Possession Friend

22:06 PM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Gromit at 23/11/2018 - 11:26
I bet all the 6 figure execs will be rolling their sleeves up over Christmas, welcoming the Homeless ( to whom they've provided warm and comforting (sic) 'advice' - making them Christmas dinner and having sleep-overs, .... ? - do you think ?

Chris @ Possession Friend

22:14 PM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Shine at 23/11/2018 - 20:48
I can assure you that Larry's heart is in the interests of Landlords.

I can also be sure that he'll make mistakes ( who doesn't ) - because it gets 'hot, only when your near the fire'

Another thing I think you'll find is that he'll listen to landlords and consider feedback from genuine sources ( If he does all that, I'll excuse any typo's )

Mark Shine

23:50 PM, 23rd November 2018, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris Daniel at 23/11/2018 - 22:14
Yes I accept that Chris. A little like Larry in some ways... I can be somewhat direct. In this particular respect, (me being v direct again here) given that all this stuff is essentially a war of words (and of course facts) at this stage.... should the new NLA’s initial action be to consider engaging an individual(s) who has comms / PR / media expertise to assist in concisely yet effectively conveying the message to TPTB?

Arnie Newington

7:52 AM, 24th November 2018, About 6 years ago

A very interesting article! I remember some time ago I heard a media report quoting a statistic provided by Shelter that I knew to be completely fabricated.

Since then I have kept an eye on them and have come to the conclusion that this is a very bad organisation that has done a lot of damage to social housing and is now trying to do the same with the private rental sector.

For some reason our leaders don’t seem to want to see this and it’s no wonder we have a housing crisis if they are listening to this bunch of Champagne Socialists.

Larry Sweeney

9:28 AM, 24th November 2018, About 6 years ago

The mainstream media as I have pointed out are useless. They are missing the entire Narrative as they squirm in the face of the multi million pound charity.
They and Shelter would love to portrait us as some kind of evil Charity hating bunch.
This brings me to the noble efforts of Rob Mellors. Let us all get behind Robs Charity. We should push this as an alternative to the horrible hate fiiled agenda of Shelter.
The Alliance endorces Mr Mellor and his new charity and we will encourage our members to make a contribution this Christmas.
If Mr Mellors could please email the Alliance the bank details of the charity, the Alliance would be delighted to get the ball rolling with a £100 donation.

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