Almost two years after the London riots that destroyed parts of Croydon, some people whose lives and businesses were devastated have still not received any compensation, a meeting heard on Wednesday.
As part of a nationwide review ordered by the Home Office into the Riot (Damages) Act 1886, the public was invited to Fairfield Halls on Park Lane to share their experiences of the compensation process.
Croydon resident, Dale Rozario, 56, living on London Road at the time of the riots said: “I have not yet received any compensation for clothing and household items damaged by water entering my flat as firefighters fought fires nearby.”
A London Road shop owner said he had yet to receive an insurance payout for damaged stock and claimed that his business’s takings are down 40 per cent since the riots.
Another business owner complained that the compensation offered for damaged stock was less than the claim.
Labour councillor Donna Gray, representing Bensham Manor ward said: “The compensation process has not worked for ordinary residents and business people.”
Stuart Collins, Labour councillor for Broad Green said: “The Act is not fit for purpose and needs modernisation as it has taken too long for compensation to be paid out.”
A Home Office statement says the review will examine the existing criteria which determines when compensation is payable and includes key issues such as the definition of a riot, who should be liable and what level of compensation is suitable.
Former senior civil servant Neil Kinghan who is leading the review of the act said the review will “also look at how compensation claims were handled after the riots,” and the issue of “whether people had the appropriate and correct level of insurance cover.”
Wrapping up the meeting Kinghan declared his hope that the Home Office will publish his report in full adding the ministry “may or may not accept my recommendations.”
The review is expected to finish by September 2013.