The Post-bag Emptied: Letters To Squall
Response To Ability
Squall 4, April/May 1993, pg. 25.
Just a short letter of support. I read one of your booklets which asked for feedback and so I decided to write.
Roughly a year and a half ago, my girlfriend and I squatted a council flat. The previous occupants had been junkie/prostitutes and the people in the block caused enough hassle for them to be evicted by the police in a raid. In almost criminal negligence, the door was still off its hinges when we first looked into it and, once inside, the danger to children became apparent as there were used and unused needles and used condoms scattered around. The police didn’t seem to give a thought to the danger of leaving it so accessible. After clearing everything out and washing the flat with Dettol we fixed the front door and then refurnished the flat.
Over the past year we have received gifts such as three-piece suites, hoovers & wallpaper from the people of the block. We ourselves have painted most of the flat, fixed the electricity and the water pipes.
My girlfriend and I feel that we are actually doing the council a favour by keeping the flat habitable and warm. It also feels like we’re minding it for them. Unlike the lies in the newspapers, we haven’t broken in while the occupants were doing their shopping, nor have we smashed the flat and left it rotting and smelly (why would any squatter?). In fact, the only damage to the flat was caused when the council put up the steel windows which have smashed the glass and subsequently we use a lot of electricity in heating the flat.
Good luck in the future, fighting the lies.