Agenda item

Members' Motions

To consider the following motions:


·  A People's Vote on Brexit

·  School cuts

·  Royal British Legion commemoration

·  End unfair evictions - abolish Section 21 of 1988 Housing Act

·  Third runway at Heathrow

·  Opposing bus cuts

·  Overground ticket office closures

·  Solidarity with the Windrush generation

·  Sustainable public health funding


A motion to extend the guillotine by 30 minutes was proposed by Councillor Hamish McCallum, seconded by Councillor Sarah King, and agreed.




(see page 29 of the main agenda and pages 9-10 of supplemental agenda no. 1)


This motion was considered prior to the guillotine having fallen.


Councillor David Noakes, seconded by Councillor Victor Chamberlain, moved the motion.


Councillor Vicky Mills, seconded by Councillor James McAsh, moved Amendment C.


Councillor Graham Neale, seconded by Councillor Humaira Ali, moved Amendment B.  


Following debate (Councillors Renata Hamvas, James Coldwell, Gavin Edwards and David Noakes), Amendment C was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


As Amendment C was carried, Amendment B fell


The motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes that:


a.  Southwark’s EU referendum result was one of the highest in the UK in favour of staying in the EU – 73% voted to Remain.

b.  Recent opinion polls indicate that there has been a significant swing in favour of a 'People’s Vote' on the final Brexit deal and polls also indicate a clear opposition to the deal that the Prime Minister has proposed.

c.  The Government’s own impact assessments show that the UK is likely to be worse off in every scenario after Brexit.

d.  A recent report by the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics noted that Inner London Boroughs like Southwark will be amongst those that will suffer the most from Brexit, of whatever variety.

e.  There will be severe damage to our international relationships, reduced influence with other states, and the complete loss of say and control over the rules of the European Single Market and Customs Union, the largest market in the world.

f.  There are a large number of non-UK EU nationals living in Southwark who are concerned about the impact of Brexit on their lives, and that their current rights are not being fully protected.

g.  The Government has totally mismanaged the Brexit negotiations. The ‘Chequers Statement’, issued on 6th July 2018, (the closest indication yet of what a final deal might look like), has been rejected by EU negotiators and has also managed to alienate both supporters and opponents of Brexit. Similarly, the draft Withdrawal Agreement proposed by the Prime Minister is unlikely to be approved in a vote in Parliament.

h.  The NHS is experiencing severe problems in recruiting and retaining nurses and doctors from other EU countries since the decision was made to leave the European Union, and this is having a real negative impact on the health of local residents.

i.  The UK economy is now the slowest growing economy in Europe, reducing the prosperity of the UK and our local residents. New investment in the area is being jeopardised and new job opportunities are being lost.

j.  Inflation caused by Brexit-related depreciation of the pound is driving up living costs for our poorest residents, further squeezing their living standards.

k.  The Prime Minister’s deal does not meet the six tests set out by the Labour Party in order to support any deal, which are:

  i.  Does it ensure a strong and collaborative future relationship with the EU?

  ii.  Does it deliver the “exact same benefits” as we currently have as members of the Single Market and Customs Union?

  iii.  Does it ensure the fair management of migration in the interests of the economy and communities?

  iv.  Does it defend rights and protections and prevent a race to the bottom?

  v.  Does it protect national security and our capacity to tackle cross-border crime?

  vi.  Does it deliver for all regions and nations of the UK?

l.  The Prime Minister has failed to satisfy members of her own party, the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats that this deal is right for Britain, and she is unlikely to command a Parliamentary majority to approve her deal.


2.  In that event, council assembly therefore:

a.  Believes that the people of Southwark should have scrutiny of what is being negotiated on their behalf and an opportunity to vote either in a General Election, or failing that, a public vote on the final deal, including the option to remain in the EU.

b.  Supports all options remaining on the table in the event that a General Election is not called immediately, including formally adding its voice to those calling for a public ‘People’s Vote’ on the final Brexit deal.

c.  Asks the three Members of Parliament that represent Southwark to publicly support a 'People’s Vote' before any version of Brexit is implemented in the event that a General Election is not called immediately.




(see page 30 of the main agenda and page 11 of supplemental agenda no. 1)


The guillotine having fallen, Amendment D was put to the vote and declared carried.  


The motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes that as a result of the ongoing government cuts, Southwark’s schools:

a.  Will have lost £17,474,847 in overall funding between 2015-2020, equating to a loss of on average £457 per pupil.

b.  Must bear the brunt of unfunded National Insurance increases.

c.  Will suffer inadequate High Needs Block Funding, leaving our must vulnerable pupils without the support they need.


2.  Council assembly further notes:

a.  That despite the savage cuts being imposed by the Conservative government, our hardworking teachers, support staff, students and parents are doing their best to maintain our high standards.

b.  The grassroots Fair Funding For Schools Campaign in Southwark, which is supported by Southwark’s three Labour MPs, Liberal Democrat Councillors and Labour Councillors.

c.  That 90% of Southwark’s schools have been rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted, and results continue to improve.

d.  The Chancellor’s Budget announcement for £400 million for schools to spend on ‘little extras’ is a drop in the ocean compared to the £2.5 billion that has been cut since 2015.  Furthermore the £400 million is a one off payment so does not deal with the long term funding crisis in schools.


3.  Council assembly resolves to call on cabinet:

a.  To join other councils and Southwark’s MPs in opposing the government’s ongoing cuts to school budgets and call for more funding to be invested in education.

b.  To call on the government to fully fund the pay increase for teachers that is independently recommended by the School Teachers' Review Body.

c.  To support the coalition of trade unions campaigning against school cuts.

d.  To recognise that the Pupil Premium benefits the most disadvantaged pupils in the borough, with Southwark pupils receiving over £112 million since the scheme was introduced, and confirms its commitment to ensuring that pupils continue to receive this support.




(see page 30-31 of the main agenda)


The guillotine having fallen, the motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes:

a.  That November 2018 marks the centenary of the end of the First World War, the world’s first truly global war.

b.  The council’s commitment under the Armed Forces covenant to recognise and remember the sacrifices made by the Armed Forces Community, particularly those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.


2.  Council assembly therefore gratefully acknowledges:

a.  The 1.1 million United Kingdom and Commonwealth servicemen and women who gave their lives in the First World War.

b.  The contribution of all those who lived through this tragic and remarkable time and whose example and experience shaped the world we live in today.


3.  Council assembly asserts its full support for the Royal British Legion’s ‘Thank You’ movement, and the ‘Every One Remembered’ initiative to commemorate each individual who served, sacrificed and changed our world.




(see page 31-32 of the main agenda and page 12 of supplemental agenda no. 1)


The guillotine having fallen, Amendment E was put to the vote and declared lost.  


Late Amendment J was put to the vote and declared carried,


The motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes:

a.  Due to high house prices and the lack of sufficient social housing, the proportion of people renting privately has doubled since 2004; half of 18-35s, one in four families with children, and growing numbers of older people now live in privately rented homes.

b.  Most of England’s 11 million renters are on tenancies with fixed terms of six months or a year; after this period has ended, landlords can evict their tenants with just two months’ notice, without giving them a reason. These ‘no fault evictions’ were introduced under section 21 of the 1988 Housing Act; before this, renters had much greater security and it was difficult for landlords to evict tenants who paid the rent on time and looked after the property.

c.  Evictions are the number one cause of homelessness across the UK. 80% of evictions are on no-fault grounds, and 63% of private renters who were forced to move in 2016 were evicted not due to any fault of their own but because the landlord wanted to sell or use the property.

d.  In Southwark, the number of accepted homeless applications resulting from the termination of assured short hold tenancies have significantly increased from 4.3% in 2010/11 to 30% in 2016/17. These terminations of short hold tenancies are not just as a result of section 21 notices, but these undoubtedly play a part.

e.  Insecurity harms quality of life for tenants, with private renters less likely than either owners or people in council housing to say they know lots of people in their local area, but more worried that they will have to move within the next year. The threat of being evicted also gives landlords huge power over tenants, who may decide not to complain about disrepair, big rent increases or other problems in case they are kicked out.

f.  In Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden (among other countries), tenancies are indefinite, meaning blameless tenants cannot be evicted from their homes.

g.  In 2017, the Scottish government made tenancies indefinite and banned no-fault evictions under the terms of the Private Housing (Tenancies) (Scotland) Act 2016.

h.  The End Unfair Evictions campaign run by Generation Rent, Acorn, the New Economics Foundation and the London Renters Union, and launched in June 2018.

i.  The nearly 50,000 people who had, by mid-July 2018, signed the 38 Degrees petition to abolish section 21, a growing number of groups and individuals supporting abolition, including Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, the Times newspaper, the London Assembly, the Resolution Foundation and Age UK.

j.  That Labour Shadow Housing Minister, John Healey, has announced that the next Labour Government will tackle no fault evictions and legislate for new renters rights to control costs, improve conditions and increase security.

k.  The commitment of Southwark Labour Group to improving conditions for renters in Southwark, including the manifesto pledge to introduce a Southwark Renters Union and deliver a Southwark Gold Standard for Rental Properties, which will be adopted in the Council Plan.

l.  The work that Southwark Council are already doing to prevent homelessness, including using additional requirements brought into effect by the Housing Act 2004 and the Deregulation Act 2015 to challenge section 21 notices wherever possible.


2.  Council assembly believes:

a.  Abolishing section 21 would help to make renting more secure, improve standards, increase tenant confidence and ultimately contribute towards making renting a viable long-term alternative to home ownership or social rent for the millions who currently cannot access either.

b.  Since insecure tenancies make it difficult for renters to complain and organise for their rights, removing section 21 would make it easier for new renter unions like the London Renters Union and ACORN to organise to defend their members.


3.  Council assembly calls on cabinet to:

a.  Work with the Unfair Evictions Campaign led by Generation Rent, the New Economics Foundation, ACORN and the London Renters Union, including by publicising campaign events and activities as appropriate.

b.  Continue working to improve conditions for renters in Southwark by delivering a Southwark Renters Union and Southwark Gold Standard for rental properties.

c.  Work with Harriet Harman MP, Neil Coyle MP, and Helen Hayes MP to call for the abolition of section 21 in Parliament.

d.  Continue the work to prepare a robust business case about conditions of the private rented sector in Southwark so that the a borough wide licensing scheme can be implemented and calls on cabinet to consider proposals in 2019.




(see page 32-33 of the main agenda)


The guillotine having fallen, the motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes:


a.  The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report detailing the urgency of alleviating the extent and rapidity of man-made climate change.

b.  That aviation is a major worldwide contributor to man-made climate change[1].

c.  That the expansion of Heathrow airport by building a third runway is targeted at  securing Heathrow’s status as a hub for international connecting flights, rather than in response to demand from London residents. 

d.  That the planned third runway will mean more than 250,000 additional flights into Heathrow a year.[2]


2.  Council assembly is concerned that:

a.  More flights into Heathrow will mean an increase in noise which will have a negative impact on Southwark residents living under the Heathrow flight path.

b.  An increase in flights and service vehicles at Heathrow will also contribute to deteriorating air quality across London, which will also have a negative impact on Southwark residents.


3.  Council assembly therefore resolves:

a.  To formally note its support for the work of the boroughs of Hillingdon, Wandsworth, Richmond, Hammersmith and Fulham, and the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead in joining forces with the Mayor of London and environmental groups such as Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth to challenge the expansion of Heathrow Airport and the building of a third runway.




(see page 33-34 of the main agenda and page 13 of supplemental agenda no. 1)


The guillotine having fallen, Amendment F was put to the vote and declared carried.  


The motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes:

a.  The Transport for London (TfL) consultation launched on 28 September 2018 which proposed reductions in a number of bus routes across Southwark, following a fall in passenger numbers in central London. 

b.  That council assembly in July unanimouslypassed a motion opposing the reduction of the RV1 bus timetable from six services an hour to just three, and called on TfL to rethink these proposals.

c.  That the new TfL consultation now proposes scrapping the RV1 bus route altogether, and shortening the route of the 45, 48, 53, 171, 172 and 388 buses so that they no longer serve central London.

d.  That many Southwark residents use these buses as their primary form of transport, and that reducing or removing these services will have a significant and detrimental impact on them, making it harder to commute and travel for leisure.

e.  That the proposals would terminate a number of bus routes that currently end in central London at the Elephant and Castle, and in other cases make the Elephant the last significant modal interchange. This can only make the bus stops at the Elephant more congested and slow traffic there.

f.  That changes to bus routes would sever convenient direct links from the south of the borough; for example the 40 from Dulwich currently runs to Guy’s Hospital, London Bridge underground and train station and across the river to Fenchurch Street station.

g.  The Old Kent Road Area Action Plan, which will deliver 20,000 new homes, and 10,000 new jobs along the Old Kent Road. That this increase in the number of people travelling to, from and along the Old Kent Road area will result in a greater demand on public transport, especially buses, in the area.

h.  Despite these proposals, TfL continue to negotiate s106 payments from Old Kent Road developments to increase bus routes in the area.

i.  Southwark Council’s response to the consultation, which clearly outlines the negative consequences of these bus cuts.


2.  Council assembly believes:

a.  That there are detrimental impacts on equality arising from TfL’s proposals. Buses are a particularly important mode of travel for people on low incomes and are a more accessible form of public transport for people with disabilities. Asking people with disabilities to change bus routes more often, as TfL proposes, will have a disproportionately negative impact on their travelling experience.

b.  That the data that TfL is using to justify these changes is out of date in some cases, and therefore ignores recent increases in bus usage. For example, it is clear that the RV1 has seen an increase in usage since the road works along Tooley Street have been removed and its route has therefore become more reliable.

c.  That it is short-sighted for TfL to reduce the frequency and shorten the route of some of the main and busiest bus routes along the Old Kent Road, such as the 53, just a few years before a planned increase in population in the Old Kent Road area.


3.  Council assembly resolves to call on cabinet:

a.  To work with Caroline Pidgeon AM, Chair of the London Assembly’s Transport Committee and Florence Eshalomi, AM for Southwark and Lambeth and vice-chair of the London Assembly’s Transport Committee, to oppose these bus cuts.

b.  To meet with representatives from TfL following the consultation to ensure they understand that the impact of the cuts proposed in the service would be significant to our residents.

c.  To campaign publicly against these and any further bus cuts that will disadvantage Southwark’s residents.

d.  To work with other boroughs impacted by these cuts as part of this campaign.




(see page 34-35 of the main agenda and page 14 of supplemental agenda no. 1)


The guillotine having fallen, Amendment G was put to the vote and declared carried.  


The motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes:

a.  The Arriva Rail London (ARL) and Transport for London (TfL) consultation on the proposed closure of ticket offices at 51 London Overground stations, which ran from 20 September 2018 to 11 October 2018.

b.  That two of the stations which would be affected by these closures are in Southwark: Rotherhithe and Surrey Quays.

c.  That these proposals have been opposed by the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) and Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA).

d.  That there was an overwhelming response to the consultation on the closures, with 3,400 responses to an online questionnaire, 959 emails, 2,063 postcards, 31 written submissions, and a number of petitions.

e.  That a decision on the closure of the London Overground stations has been delayed as a result of the number of response to the consultation. 

f.  That in 2015, ticket offices across the London Underground network were closed by the former Conservative Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, despite widespread opposition from both rail unions and service users.

g.  That in 2016, the Labour Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, ordered a review of the London Underground ticket office closures.

h.  That the review, carried out by the independent watchdog London TravelWatch, found that these closures had caused ‘significant issues’ and that not enough steps were taken to mitigate the impact of the closures, and as a result the service did suffer.


2.  Council assembly believes:

a.  That the closure of London Overground ticket offices would, like the closure of London Underground ticket offices, have a significant and negative impact on station users and passengers.

b.  That elderly, disabled, and vulnerable residents who may need assistance with purchasing tickets will be disproportionately affected by the proposed closures.

c.  That all residents in Southwark using Rotherhithe and Surrey Quays stations deserve the best possible service.


3.  Council assembly calls on cabinet to:

a.  Write to Heidi Alexander, the Deputy Mayor for Transport, expressing concerns about the impact of the proposed ticket office closures.

b.  Ask Caroline Pidgeon AM, Chair of the London Assembly’s Transport Committee and Florence Eshalomi, AM for Southwark and Lambeth, and Deputy Chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee, to raise these proposed ticket office closures at a future meeting of the Transport Committee.




(see page 35-36 of the main agenda and page 15 - 17 of supplemental agenda no. 1)


The guillotine having fallen, Amendment H was put to the vote and declared carried.  


Amendment I was put to the vote and declared lost.


The motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Windrush has become a symbol of African-Caribbean migration to the UK following the British government’s invitation to workers from the Commonwealth countries to help reduce the British labour shortage and re-build the war damaged country.


2.  Council assembly pays tribute to Patrick Vernon OBE, former Hackney Labour councillor, for first raising this issue by starting the online petition for justice for Windrush.


3.  Council assembly celebrates Southwark’s diverse population. As of 2015, 48% of Southwark’s population identified as Black, Asian or from another ethnic minority. Around 6% of Southwark’s population is of Afro-Caribbean descent, and while there are no official records, it is believed that Southwark is home to hundreds, if not thousands of people who answered the call to move to the UK from Commonwealth countries that had not yet become independent from the UK.


4.  Council assembly welcomes:

a.  The contributions of the Windrush generation to our society and community in Southwark, such as that of Sam King, who served in the RAF before travelling on the Empire Windrush to the UK. He worked in the Royal Mail for 34 years, and in 1982 became a Labour councillor for Bellenden ward in Peckham. He later became the first black mayor of Southwark and was awarded an MBE in 1998.

b.  The contribution of black women such as Princess Ademola, daughter of the Alake of Abeokuta, the paramount chief in northern Nigeria, who worked at Guys Hospital.

c.  Southwark Labour’s manifesto commitment to continuing to make Southwark a borough where all migrants feel welcome, with families who have lived here for generations living alongside people who have newly arrived from every corner of the globe to make our borough their home.


5.  Council assembly condemns:

a.  The “Hostile Environment” policies initiated by Theresa May as Home Secretary of the coalition government, which have continued during her time as Prime Minister, which have deliberately made it harder for those who cannot prove their right to remain in the UK to access basic services, work, or take part in civic life. The “Hostile Environment” policies include a “deport first, appeal later” approach, which has led to people being wrongly deported.


6.  Council assembly notes:

a.  That as a result of the “Hostile Environment” polices, many of the Windrush generation were targeted by the Home Office and assumed to have entered the country illegally.

b.  That as a result of this, people from the Windrush generation, their families and descendants lost their jobs, homes, ability to access NHS treatment for free, were refused re-entry into the UK, threatened with deportation, and at least 63 people were wrongly deported.

c.  The work of organisations including the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, BME (black and minority ethnic) Lawyers 4 Justice, the Runnymede Trust, Southwark’s three Labour MPs, and the All Parliamentary Group on Race who have raised the profile of this issue, directly assisted those who have been affected by it, and lobbied the Government for an immediate end to the “Hostile Environment” policies.

d.  The work of local groups such as Black Cultural Archives based in Brixton and Southwark Law Centre who have supported our residents to get their status confirmed and fought for financial compensation for jobs, homes and livelihoods lost.


7.  Council assembly believes:

a.  Southwark’s diverse society is a cause for celebration, not concern.

b.  The treatment of the Windrush generation and their descendants by this Conservative government and the previous Liberal Democrat/Conservative coalition government has been appalling, racist, and inexcusable, and must be condemned.


8.  Council assembly resolves to call on cabinet:

a.  To continue to work with Southwark’s three Labour MPs to assist those who have been targeted, criminalised, or refused access to services they should be entitled to.

b.  To continue to actively condemn and call for an immediate halt to all the government’s “Hostile Environment” policies.

c.  To call on the government to take actions to redress and compensate those who have been affected by the “Hostile Environment” and ensure that such a scandal does not take place again.

d.  To ensure through council policies that Southwark remains a welcoming place to live and work for people from all over the world.

e.  To review and ensure all council policies seek to reduce the impact of the “Hostile Environment”.

f.  To work together with other London Boroughs to ensure a joined-up approach to mitigating and eradicating this scandal.




(see page 37 of the main agenda)


The guillotine having fallen, the motion was put to the vote and declared to be carried.


Note: This motion will be referred as a recommendation to the cabinet for consideration.


1.  Council assembly notes:

a.  That the public health grant funds vital services and functions that prevent ill health and contribute to the future sustainability of the NHS.

b.  That local authorities like Southwark are responsible for delivering most of these services, but their ability to do so is compromised by public health grant reductions and the broader funding climate.

c.  That in 2018/19 and 2019/20 every local authority will have less to spend on public health than the year before, and by 2020/21 the Government is looking to phase out the Public Health Grant entirely, meaning that public health will only be funded through business rate retention.

d.  That areas with high levels of deprivation often suffer the worst health outcomes, and so need higher levels of funding in order to tackle the greater public health challenges in the area.

e.  That around four in ten cancers are preventable, largely through avoidable risk factors, such as stopping smoking, keeping a healthy weight and cutting back on alcohol. Smoking accounts for 80,000 early deaths every year and remains the largest preventable cause of cancer in the world. Smoking-related ill health costs local authorities £760 million every year in social care costs. Additionally, obesity and alcohol account for 30,000 and 7,000 early deaths each year respectively. All three increase the risk of: cancer, diabetes, lung and heart conditions, poor mental health and create a subsequent burden on health and social care.

f.  Supporting people to stop smoking, drinking excessively, and eating unhealthily falls within the remit of public health, but if there is insufficient funding, it becomes harder for public health services to support people to live healthier lives.


2.  Council assembly believes:

a.  That the impact of cuts to public health on our communities cannot and should not be ignored.

b.  That unless we restore public health funding, our health and care system will remain locked in a ‘treatment’ approach, which is neither economically viable nor protects the health of Southwark residents.

c.  That it is vital that Southwark and other local authorities delivering public health services have enough funding to provide the services that our residents need.


3.  Council assembly resolves to call on cabinet to:

a.  Support Cancer Research UK’s call for increased and sustainable public health funding.

b.  Continue to lobby the Government to deliver increased investment in public health and support a sustainable health and social care system by taking a ‘prevention first’ approach.

c.  Continue to support and fund public health initiatives to the best of the council’s abilities which will deliver the best outcomes for our residents, and prevent ill-health, reduce inequalities, and support a health and care social system that is fit for the future.



Supporting documents: