Necessity Still Breeds Ingenuity - Archive of SQUALL MAGAZINE 1992-2006

News And Other Busyness

Life On The Edge

CJA has turned travellers into criminals

Squall 16, Summer 1998, pg. 10.

GYPSIES AND TRAVELLERS have been branded criminals by recent laws which have worsened their living conditions and destroyed their way of life, a new report says.

Living on the Edge of Your Town, by Bridge Housing Association, said there were inadequate stopping places and sites for travellers, and those that did exist were of a poor standard. It adds that those who try to settle in houses often face hostility from neighbours who raise petitions against them.

Michael Wake, chief executive of the association, said the 1994 Criminal Justice Act, which removed the duty on councils to provide sites and cut off funding, carried some of the blame. The association, which runs several sites, is to lobby for a law change.

At the report's launch Lord Avebury, who as an MP drew up the 1968 Caravans Act, said its repeal was a "regrettable step backwards". He said the Housing Corporation should provide money for new sites.