Richmond Council calls on social housing landlords to address poor service to residents
27 March 2023
Richmond Council and Richmond upon Thames MPs have written an open letter to the four housing associations with the largest number of homes in Richmond upon Thames, calling for the landlords to address neglected repairs, repeat missed appointments and long delays in contact experienced by housing tenants.
Signed by the Council’s Spokesperson for Housing, Cllr Jim Millard, Leader of the Council, Cllr Gareth Roberts, Tenants’ Champion, Cllr Paulina Vassileva, Sarah Olney MP and Munira Wilson MP, the letter to Richmond Housing Partnership, PA Housing, Metropolitan Thames Valley Housing and London & Quadrant calls for urgent improvements to services, to ensure the wellbeing of residents.
Extract from the letter:
“We are extremely concerned to see rapidly rising numbers of cases being brought to us as councillors and MPs involving neglected repairs, repeat missed appointments and long delays in contact. When we then make contact with you to raise these issues in support of our residents, we are experiencing unprecedented and unacceptable delays in receiving responses from you. This has to change.
“We understand that this crisis is largely not of your making, with the legacy of the pandemic, Brexit, the war in Ukraine and the Government’s handling of the economy all having significant impacts.
“Nonetheless, the simple fact is that our residents are suffering. Our most vulnerable and disadvantaged residents are disproportionately affected, and it is our fundamental responsibility as their elected representatives to demand that you do everything in your power to improve and do so rapidly.
“We make the following requests:
- That you submit to us your detailed plans for recovery and improvement, so residents can be assured that these have been subject to independent democratic scrutiny and are being monitored by us going forward.
- Give us new commitments on length of time to respond to members’ enquiries, based on a timeframe that you realistically expect to be able to meet in the current circumstances - we will then monitor these response times.
- Work with us to establish a road map to bring those response times back to pre-pandemic levels as quickly as possible. Again, we will monitor progress with this on an ongoing basis.
“We will also continue to value each of your organisations’ attendance at the Council’s Adult Social Services, Health and Housing Committee with an annual report on performance over the year. This is, of course, another opportunity for our members to provide residents with an assurance of independent democratic scrutiny of the performance of our major housing associations over the long term and to keep open dialogue on key issues affecting our residents.”
Up to: March 2023
Updated: 27 March 2023