Plans to improve service for social housing tenants

The government has released new plans intended to ensure that social housing tenants will receive fairer and better service from their housing provider.

New standards set by the government will make sure that providers equip staff with the skills, experience and knowledge to deliver the excellent service that tenants want and deserve.

A recent survey of social housing residents revealed that a quarter were not satisfied that their landlord listens to their views and acts upon them, while a third of the Severe Maladministration findings from the Ombudsman related to poor complaint handling from landlords.

A cultural overhaul is also intended to root out unacceptable behaviour, with social landlords instructed to adopt strict code of conducts that set out how all staff should perform and act towards tenants.

Minister for Social Housing, Baroness Scott said: "Time and again we have seen tenants ignored, dismissed or not taken seriously. Our new competence and conduct standard sends a clear message to social landlords to treat tenants with the dignity and respect they deserve.

"Our landmark Social Housing Act is introducing life-changing reforms – giving tenants a louder voice to challenge their landlord and this will allow us to go further, making sure staff are properly trained and qualified to deliver homes that are safe, warm and decent."

Gavin Smart, CEO Chartered Institute of Housing said: "We welcome the government’s support for professionalism in the sector, with a focus on competency and conduct, including mandating qualifications for key senior roles. Qualifications are an effective way of ensuring professionals have the required knowledge and skills. But professionalism is more than a qualification; it’s about following a code of conduct and ethics, and displaying the right behaviours, attitudes, and empathy."

 

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