Nottingham City Homes residents raised their tenant voice once again at their Big Conversation event to get their thoughts and ideas on the social housing Green Paper.
The Government announced proposed reforms to social housing that they say will “re-balance” tenant-landlord relationships and pave the way for stronger communities.
The Social Housing Green Paper was published in response to the Grenfell Tower fire and has been billed as a “fundamental rethink” of the system.
The Government has asked for views on their plans, so Nottingham City Homes brought residents together at a big event at the Council House in Old Market Square, to have their say and help shape something so important.
Although NCH plan to submit their own response to the Government, they are also helping tenants submit their own response and this event was just one of a number of opportunities residents have to give their views.
More than 80 people attended the event, NCH resident Sue Stevenson was one of them and said: “I’m grateful that we have a landlord like Nottingham City Homes who actively seeks out the views of their residents. I’m proud to be a council tenant and proud of my neighbours and community. I hope the Government listens to our views.”
In the Green Paper, the Government has come up with new ideas - some of which NCH residents have already helped to shape. The topics include:
- Ending the stigma of council housing and celebrating our communities
- Giving tenants more of a voice about the services you receive
- Knowing where to go when things go wrong, and who to turn to
- Looking at the decent home standard and the safety of their home
Nick Murphy, Chief Executive at Nottingham City Homes, said: “We've made sure that Nottingham's tenants' voices are heard loud and clear by the Government in the past and it’s important we continue to do this. Together, we've already got the Government to give decent homes funding to Nottingham, scrap their plans for fixed-term tenancies, scrap their plans to force us to sell off larger council houses and scrap their plans to charge some tenants more rent – these are big wins for Nottingham tenants!
“Working together and getting the views of real residents is so important because it means together we can get real change from the Government. I would encourage all residents to get involved in our Big Conversation and have their say.”
You can read the social housing Green Paper by clicking here.
People can also give their views by completing this survey from NCH.
These views, or as many as we can include, will then be sent to the Government. People can also fill in the Government's own survey by clicking here
The consultation closes at 11.45pm on Tuesday 6 November
At the event, NCH resident and Vice Chair of our Board, Sarita-Marie Rehman-Wall read out a poem she had written, challenging stigma faced by council tenants:
See the Person
Please do not look at me, like I’m something on your shoe,
So, I live in social housing, am I inferior to you?
You know nothing of my life, so who are you to Judge?
Do you see me as unworthy? And so, you hold a grudge?
Please do not approach me, as if you are my friend
When deep down in your psyche, you know it’s all pretend
I’m tired of your assumptions, your negativity is rife,
Would it shock you if I told you, Social Housing saved my life?
Please do not attempt, to make me feel ashamed,
I’m proud of my estate, I refuse to be defamed
Why can’t you see the person, behind your cruel perception?
I can thoroughly assure you, it’s a widespread misconception!
Please do not believe, all you witness on the news,
‘Sink Estates’ and ‘ASB’, you let this form your views?
Have you the ability, to see the woods for the trees?
It’s merely all a ploy, to bring social housing to its knees!
Please do not berate me, because I haven’t bought my home
I still have aspirations, and dreams all of my own
I live my life for others, and helping is my high
Although I’m not a homeowner, some things you cannot buy!
Please do not fear me, I will not steal your phone
I’d rather tend my garden or potter around my home
Talk to me, I’m human I won’t give you a fright
You might just come to like me, I swear I do not bite!
Please just see the person, behind your social stigma
I’m human just like you, not some strange enigma
The sooner you accept that, and then learn not to judge
You might just see the person and lose that silly grudge!!
By Sarita-Marie Rehman-Wall