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Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Riverside rent rise

May 24 2009
Residents at a Docklands hostel protest against 70 per cent rent hike Residents at a homeless hostel are up in arms about a substantial rise in weekly service charges. Riverside House in Docklands, east London, houses up to 40 homeless men who are supported through drug and drink rehabilitation programmes. People living at the centre, which is run by the Salvation Army's Housing Association, have been told that their rent payments are to be increased by around 70 per cent - an average jump in real terms from £14 a week to £23. One resident, who did not want to be named, said: "We all signed a petition in protest to such a steep rise. We are all on benefits and a lot of us are battling against drink and drug addiction. This is such a huge rise that there was a real air of militancy around the place, but the managers know that we have nowhere else to go, so there is little we can do really." In a letter, the Salvation Army blames the rent hike on the "rising cost of utilities" and says the rises will help residents learn useful skills in budgeting so that they will be "equipped to meet the demands that will be presented to them in the future." On going to press, the situation had yet to be resolved, with some of the residents considering rent strikes.