Established 2005 Registered Charity No. 1110656

Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Complaint against eviction

May 18 2009
A former Passage resident claims his eviction cost him a possible £28,000 job and his trust with the care system A former resident of The Passage has claimed his eviction cost him a possible £28,000 job and his trust with the care system, and is now hoping to take his case to court. Ken Allen, 49, had been a Passage House resident since 2005, having been twice evicted for rent payment disagreements elsewhere. When a previous employer offered him the role of a publican he was delighted, and applied for entry exams. However, he was evicted from The Passage, which saw his chances of gaining a licence disappear, as the council will not issue one to an individual without a permanent address. Mick Clarke, chief executive for The Passage, said although the organisation could confirm Mr Allen had lodged a complaint, which he added Mr Allen was right to do, he could not comment as the investigation is still active. Mr Allen said he had visited The Passage day centre on February 10th last year to enquire about housing support, as he was worried he would be evicted from Passage House, because of an ongoing disagreement with a female member of staff. He approached another female member of staff to discuss his needs. Although Mr Allen has not divulged the exact nature of the conversation, it was then he was evicted. The woman at The Passage day centre said she had argued with him. When Mr Allen returned to Passage House, he claims three male members of staff expelled him immediately. He applied to Edward Alsop Court for alternative accommodation, but was refused and he believes this is because The Passage gave him a bad reference, stating he was a danger to women. Mr Allen said he feels the organisation acted on an assumption rather than tangible evidence, such as CCTV footage or witnesses. Throughout his year-long stay at Passage House, Mr Allen has alleged that mismanagement and discrimination caused him ill-health and frustration. After making a complaint about his roommate, he was re-housed in a maintenance void and then in a room with a blocked sink. He accused The Passage of ignoring his complaints and was disappointed by Westminster Council's investigation of written records. Mr Allen wanted the residents to give their side of the story, through an independent consultant hired by The Passage Day Centre in January this year, but he has not been able to follow up the case as he has since been barred. Mr Clarke could not divulge whether the investigation was internal, but said "we are following our procedure, and Westminster Council will be linked as we work within their area." Discussing active cases with the press can affect their outcome, and so Mr Clarke remained tight-lipped about any details. "But I am hopeful we can get a good conclusion," he added. Mr Allen has lost two previous jobs when he had nowhere to sleep due to evictions. He hopes to receive £28,000 compensation for a lost career.