Press Release: Commonwealth Games Human Rights Neglect

PRESS RELEASE:

On Tuesday the 15th of March, Margaret Jaconelli a home-owner in the way of development for the Commonwealth Games Village will make a second appeal to the court of session to request that she is adequately compensated for the home she owns on Ardenlea street which Glasgow City Council is forcing her to leave using compulsory purchase powers. If unsuccessful, Margaret Jaconelli will be evicted from her home on Thursday, 17th March.

The story of Margaret’s eviction has become something of a media spectacle and political football. The facts of her story have also been ignored or misrepresented by a number of mainstream media resources. Yet all Margaret wants is to have her human rights acknowledged and to be adequately compensated for her and her families’ home. Despite repeated attempts by Margaret to negotiate a civilised deal, the Council have refused to negotiate in a reasonable manner with her, instead placing a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) on her property giving the Council legal entitlement to evict her and her family.

Margaret Jaconelli, the last resident in the area, faces having nowhere to live as of March the 17th, and no capacity to purchase like-for-like adequate housing that reflects the value of her home as it stood before the council demolished everything around it. The compensation she has been offered after a long and arduous legal wrangle does not include compensation for the money she has lost on legal fees and the expense of having to heat a flat in an entirely empty tenement block that the council has refused to maintain in the years since her neighbours were re-housed. Added to this, the unnecessary stalling of the City Council has led to many years of stress, anguish and ill-health for Mrs. Jaconelli with nothing but an uncertain future to look forward to.

Compare this nightmare situation to the hugely profitable land deal done between wealthy Mayfair property developer Charles Price and the City Council. Price bought a parcel of land in Dalmarnock for £8 million in the period 2002-2005 which similarly lies on a site earmarked for Commonwealth Games development. The City Council had it within their powers to perform a CPO on Price’s land, but instead negotiated with Price (a process denied to Margaret Jaconelli) resulting in a generous £17 million sale of the land (with £3 million added VAT): a total cost of £20 million pounds of public money.

While land speculators continue to maximise profit at tax-payers expense, what a disgrace that the City Council haven’t been able to negotiate a fair deal with Mrs. Jaconelli who faces appalling conditions and insufficient capital to change her circumstances satisfactorily.  This deeply unfair situation may become even more commonplace in the years to come as the SNP are currently developing legislation to make it even easier for local authorities to place Compulsory Purchase Orders on Scottish Home-owners. As a matter of urgency, we call on the City Council to adequately compensate Mrs. Jaconelli for her home and the expenses she has incurred in legal fees and exorbitant heating bills which are no fault of her own.

For more information please contact: gamesmonitor2014@googlemail.com

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Contact Councillors, Msps and Mps: http://www.writetothem.com/
Ardenlea Street and Springfield Road lie in Ward 9 of Glasgow.

Further Reading and Viewing:

Games Monitor Blog:
http://gamesmonitor2014.wordpress.com/

‘Planning Displacement: The Real Legacy of Major Sporting Events’, Planning Theory and Practice, 2009. Planning_and_displacement_Interface_PTP_10.3

Ardenlea Street Film: http://gamesmonitor2014.wordpress.com/film-clips/

Article 8 of the Human Rights Act:
http://www.yourrights.org.uk/yourrights/the-human-rights-act/the-convention-rights/article-8-right-to-respect-for-private-and-family-life.html