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Mission Statement:
We believe that affordable and high quality housing is the key to the social and economic well being of the nation.

We believe that mutual self-help remains an effective means by which members of society can work together, particularly at a time when the role of the state is diminishing.

We believe that mutual Building Societies are vital in providing both housing at a reasonable price and diversity and competition in the market place for financial services.

Our Objective:
We wish to see turn back the tide against mutuality and to campaign for a change in the law to protect the public, investors and borrowers from those who are seeking an end to the concept of mutuality.

Our natural supporters are:
1) Building Societies

2) Housing providers such as housing associations who borrow money from building societies.

3) Long term investors in building societies

4) The ordinary man and woman in the street with families, whose children will need housing in the future.

5) People who are low paid and are concerned at how they will pay for their accommodation

6) Those who believe that economic control of the provision of housing should remain within this country, without the danger of that control moving abroad.

7)Those who believe that competition and diversity in the market place in financial services is best for the consumer.

8)Concerned citizens who believe that in the light of changes in the welfare state the idea of self-help, epitomised by the foundation of Mutuals in the last century, needs to be protected for the future.

9) Everyone who needs a home!


Our Strategy (to date):
To lobby for the following:

1) That Building Societies be allowed to admit only those who believe in their mutual status:

a) if necessary members should be required to sign a declaration to that effect;

b) Building Societies should obtain the right to offer special membership terms to the members of groups naturally sympathetic to Mutuals

2) That voting rights for Building Society members be linked to the length of membership and (possibly?) the amount invested, with the rewards on conversion allocated accordingly

3) That the right to stand for election to the board be linked directly to the total size of membership of the Building Society, with a prescribed minimum percentage of members being needed to support a person seeking election.


Our first actions:
We intend to:
mailshot all building societies, housing providers (including local authorities) and all the media

& seek funding from concerned parties


SOBS proposed structure:
Establish a local network of contacts to liaise with interested groups and local authorities.
Involve a few people confident with and known to the media who can speak on behalf of the cause.

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updated 30 Dec 2000