In another huge misstep, Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council have shown an astonishing insensitivity to survivors of the Grenfell Tower disaster.
The council has already caused anger among local people by stating that any survivor who accepts an offer of free temporary accommodation from a kind-hearted local builder will be removed from the council’s rehoming list. Now it transpires that the council itself has offered some Grenfell residents temporary accommodation – in a building that they describe as a ‘carbon copy’ of Grenfell Tower.
Some survivors have been offered rooms at a local Premier Inn, which in itself sounds unobjectionable. But anyone with a little local knowledge knows that the high-rise hotel bears a strong resemblance to the building that burned down last week with huge loss of life.
Including exterior cladding:
It’s unknown whether anyone has accepted the offer, but several families and individuals have already refused it, saying that they can’t bear the thought of being shut up in a building so similar to the one that they barely escaped and which cost the lives of so many friends and relatives.
Given that many local people – even those who were simply near the blaze and not in it – are suffering flashbacks, insomnia and what must be post-traumatic stress, it seems staggeringly insensitive to propose moving people back into an environment like the one at the root of their trauma.
Kensington and Chelsea Borough Council have so far been unreachable for comment.
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