Are tenants adequately involved in decisions that affect their homes?

London Tenants Federation E-bulletin June 2018

www.londontenants.org  –  www.facebook.com/londontenants/  –  @londontenants

Are tenants adequately involved in decisions that affect their homes?

London Assembly Housing Committee Post-Grenfell Investigation

Email your comments or evidence to the committee by 29 June

Through discussion with the chair of the London Assembly Housing Committee, Sian Berry AM, it was agreed that LTF would support the committee’s investigation into social housing tenants’ involvement in decision-making about their homes, post-Grenfell, by facilitating a meeting of social housing tenant representatives with the committee.

Since the Grenfell tower fire, last year, LTF has argued that as part of efforts to prevent such a tragedy occurring again, there must be change in policy and practice around participation of tenants in decision-making about their homes – to ensure our voices are properly heard.

For some time, we have seen the gradual loss of democratic and accountable tenant participation processes, including removal of funding from an increasing number of council tenant federations or organisations that bring together elected tenant and resident representatives around borough-wide issues. Instead, consumerist models that were more common in the housing association sector are being gradually adopted across social landlords. Such models include a wide range of panels, forums and mystery shopping, through which tenants (sometimes selected) might engage, but without a remit to couch the views of others, or to feed back to them. Necessarily many tenants lack trust in these processes, resulting in disengagement and ultimately disempowerment.

LTF, alongside other groups that we have contacts with – including Camden Housing Association Tenants Forum, Genesis Residents, London Federation of Housing Co-operatives and Race on the Agenda, presented concerns to the meeting, which also facilitated an open mic session. Together we agreed a list of ‘asks’ of the London Mayor.

This link provides information about the investigation including the committee’s key topics and, towards the bottom of the page, a link to a full recording of the meeting, held on 24 May.

While the London Assembly doesn’t have policy-making powers, it has a role in scrutinising the Mayor. Its investigations can put pressure on the Mayor and ultimately contribute to policy changes.

There are opportunities for tenants and residents to submit written comments or evidence to the committee and we encourage you, your TRA, TMO, Co-operatives and / or wider networks to do so, by emailing housingcommittee@london.gov.uk by 29 June.

We have attached an document that highlights our key asks of the London Mayor and some of the issues that we discussed with the other groups that we worked with, in preparing for the London Assembly meeting.

Please also find links here to a briefing on TRAs (with a case study), on TMOs (with case study) and Co-operatives that we produced for the London Assembly Housing Committee members, a comment piece from LTF delegates published in Inside Housing and an article published in the Times which reported on the London Assembly Housing Committee meeting.

Stand Up for the Elephant protest!

From Elephant Amenity Network

Dear Friend

The shopping centre planning application has yet to be approved or rejected by Southwark Council and while there have been improvements to the original application it still not good enough.  We don’t know exactly when the planning committee will be making its decision, it but we have to be ready.  There is a weekend of activity this weekend, leading up to a Protest: Stand Up For The Elephant, 6pm, Thursday 21st June, Outside London College of Communications SE1 6SB

More details and FB event here

To build support for this protest please come and help on our next campaign stall: Up the Elephant campaign stall, 11am-12pm, Saturday 16th June,
outside Elephant shopping Centre, top of the slope opposite Charlie Chaplin pub.  No social cleansing, no community stitch up!

We will also be leafletting the local area 4pm-7pm, Sunday 17 June, outside Elephant shopping Centre, top of the slope opposite Charlie Chaplin pub.

Attached is a letter sent by local campaign groups to the London College of Communication

Up the Elephant is supported by Stop the Elephant DevelopmentLatin ElephantElephant Amenity NetworkSouthwark Defend Council HousingOccupy Elephant, and Southwark Notes.

Regards

Jerry

NHS70 parkrun day, Saturday 9th June

To help mark the NHS’s 70th birthday,  NHS70 and Parkrun UK  have teamed up to jointly host – on Saturday 9th June – NHS70 parkrun day.

Launched by double Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes, over 350 local parkruns will be hosting special events to celebrate the contribution of the NHS to the nation, whilst encouraging people to get active.

With support from local NHS bodies, local parkruns will give their regular events a special NHS theme for the day with NHS staff, patients and the wider public being encouraged to attend.

Parkruns are free, 5k events that take place in hundreds of locations across the UK every Saturday morning. They are coordinated entirely by volunteers and are open to walkers and runners of all ages and abilities.

There are now more than 350 parkruns signed up to be part of NHS70 parkrun day with more expected to join. Please contact your local parkrun to get involved and don’t forget to register.

Find out more about parkrun