Many people of late have expressed the opinion that homes in London ought to be made affordable for those in essential occupations but not so much for other ‘wannabe Londoners’ because “London is a great place to live but… if you can’t afford it find an alternative.” Well, here’s the thing: London is a great place in large part because of all the life, the vibrancy and the amenities that it has, but if you want to be able to enjoy the bars, sandwich shops, malls, cafés, gyms, cinemas and offices then they will all need to be staffed and cleaned and those are jobs which pay neither megabucks nor, very often, a commuting salary. Homes need to be made available for all and affordable to all.
And besides, who truly wants to live in a fiscally-segregated society anyway? People is people – being in a different salary bracket doesn’t make any of us any better than or even any different to one another; just more fortunate, perhaps. Inequality is the enemy of social cohesion and it is certainly not a state to be encouraged or pursued. The alternative to an integrated society is a disintegrated society, with all of the fragmentation and division which that term implies. We should be aiming to become a more whole nation, working together to make not just London but Britain a place we can all be proud to be a part of and proud to call our home, and that is why greater provision of so-called social housing is something which we all ought to be demanding.