Amsterdam Kolenkitgroep stands up and organizes itself against eviction by Rochdale and Stadgenoot!


The Kolenkitbuurt in Amsterdam is changing. by sent gentrification and a far-reaching urban renewal policy the share of social housing is falling. The composition of the population is drastically changing. Rich people in, poor people out. This cannot go on any longer!


On January 5, 2016, a mother with child threatens to be put on the street. They are the first of a group of more than 100 temporary tenants who will soon have to leave their homes. Their homes are being renovated for sale in the project Cool Kit. These tenants have united because they believe the limit has been reached. The Bond Precaire Woonvorm agrees and supports the action of the Kolenkitgroep. Come to the solidarity meeting at the Rochdale Head Office, Bos en Lommerweg 303 in Amsterdam on Monday 4 January 2 pm. Bring your tent and trolley!


For over 10 years there has been a dormant process of gentrification and relocation policy place to change the demographics and attract more affluent populations. Temporary rental functions as a lubricant for the veryupping in this process. The temporary tenants set up social projects, organize neighborhood initiatives and invest time and energy in the quality of life in the neighbourhood. But after the services rendered, they are unceremoniously put on the street. The share of social rent is being scaled back and property prices are being pushed up. For example, the Jan van Schaffelaarplantsoen was recently sold for 45 million euros to a gigantic American investment company, CBRE Global Investor Offices.


The relocation policy in neighborhoods such as the Kolenkitbuurt pits various precarious groups against each other: the tenants with rights are first relocated because they yield too little, and then the temporary tenants with a minimum of rights who have to make way for the dreamed residents. Meanwhile, the waiting lists are increasing and it is becoming increasingly difficult to find affordable housing in the city. That has a price: growing insecurity among tenants, and an increasing number of people being forced into residential nomadism.

In recent years, the laws on temporary letting have been increasingly relaxed, resulting in a growing group of tenants experiencing livelihood insecurity. Young people and other house hunters are increasingly being forced down all kinds of temporary (flex) rental contracts. The rent protection in these contracts is often minimal, or even absent altogether.

The diversity of the group of precarious residents in the Kolenkitbuurt illustrates the recent proliferation of disposable contracts. The group includes people with (temporary) campus contracts, vacancy law contracts and loan contracts through housing corporation Stadgenoot, but also anti-squat tenants with disguised leases through Zwerfkei and artists who receive a discount on their rent in exchange for work in kind. They are now joining forces to jointly stand up for their housing rights. In the words of one of the residents: “Students, blue-collar workers, flex workers and the unemployed. We no longer allow ourselves to be sidelined individually. Together we stand stronger."

Minister Stef Blok (VVD) presented his 'Lease Market Flow Act' this month, in which plans are being rolled out for 1- and 5-year leases. Carola Schouten (ChristenUnie) also recently presented a proposal for temporary youth contracts. Housing insecurity threatens to become the norm, especially for young people who cannot afford an owner-occupied home or a private sector rental home.

We should no longer be bullied, says a spokesman for the BPW. “The demolition of our public housing system and rent protection are a deliberate political policy. Housing rights should apply to everyone, regardless of (flex) contract”.

In urban renewal districts, temporary tenants are used as moving livestock to liven up the neighborhood during the 'transition phase' and to maintain the quality of life without being paid. The ease with which they are subsequently evicted shows that they are second-class tenants with no social rights. No right to stay, no right to resettlement and no right to reimbursement of moving expenses. That is not acceptable, says Nathalie, one of the residents who are members of the Kolenkit group: “Housing corporations were established to give people stability and shelter. This is contrary to that. It's time for Rochdale and Stadgenoot to show their social side again."

The Coal Kit Group has tried to contact Rochdale in a variety of ways to find a solution. They spoke at a meeting of the district, but without result. Tenants' association De Maansikkel, which also represents permanent tenants, was dismissed with the excuse that you do not have to consult with temporary tenants. Tenant Khadija, who is in danger of being evicted with her daughter Yasmin on January 5, sought help from Rochdale and was told: “If you want to stay in your house, you have to buy the house. Otherwise you just have to get out.” In short: whoever has money can stay, the rest must leave.


The temporary tenants united in the Kolenkitgroep therefore have 2 requirements:

  1. Conversion from temporary to permanent leases. (with minor renovation)
  2. Rehousing in case of eviction. (for large-scale renovation)


The BPW supports the Kolenkitgroep in these requirements. “Stop the sale of our public housing, the lower limit for social housing has now been reached. Stop exchanging one (flex) tenant for another. Together with tenants and tenant organizations, we will continue to oppose legislation that legalizes livelihood insecurity and the eviction of entire neighbourhoods. No one should be kicked out. The city belongs to everyone! We call on everyone to support us”

A mother with child threatens to be evicted on January 5. That is why we are jointly organizing a solidarity action.
Show solidarity and be heard. Come to the Rochdale Head Office, Bos en Lommerplein 303 on Monday 4 January 14:00.
Bring your tent and suitcase!

Follow the resident group on Facebook Temporarily In The Coal Kit
or Twitter @kolenkitgroep


Support the fight for housing security!

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