“72 DEAD AND STILL NO ARRESTS. HOW COME?”: GRENFELL ACTIVISTS TURN HEADS AT LFW

News by Madeleine Coffey

Almost two years on from the horrific tower-block fire that stole 72 lives and left survivors homeless, Justice4Grenfell (J4G) took to the runway at London Fashion Week demanding justice for the victims of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.  

Activists, bereaved families, and members of the West London community were joined by highprofile supporters of the cause, including musician Emeli Sande, and models Adwoa Aboah and Clara Paget. The group lined the LFW catwalk, hand-in-hand, wearing T-shirts emblazoned with a poignant message: “72 dead and still no arrests. How come?”

Designed by Grenfell Speaks and SplitSquare Design, the T-shirts served as a tragic reminder that nobody has been held accountable for the devastation caused by the fire, and survivors have been left without sufficient compensation or hope for closure.

In addition to honouring victims and defending survivors, the protest aimed to highlight the lack of action that has been done to prevent such disasters from happening again. Poor infrastructure and lack of fire safety facilities in in the building ensured rapid spread of the fire, yet according to J4G, there are still “hundreds of buildings with flammable cladding” and “developers and local authorities are consistently ignoring the London Fire Brigade’s advice that sprinklers are crucial in their buildings”.

In the aftermath of the fire, a public inquiry to explain why the 24-storey tower was wrapped in combustible cladding was promised. However, in December 2018, it was revealed that the next phase of the inquiry may not take place until 2020.

“I hope the public sees the faces, the stories, and knows that it’s still very much part of the survivors’ everyday lives. People lost their lives, loved ones and homes,” said Adwoa Aboah.

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