If ever a day was important to tenants then this is the one. Even the Government is making all kinds of noises about social housing, of course, it’s all post Grenfell and you have to wonder if we would have seen the introduction of the Social Housing Green Paper. Draw your own conclusions about that.
If ever there was a time to have a National Tenants Voice, then this is it. I am fully supportive of this and if it was constituted and funded it could be a great asset to the tenants of social housing
I think it would go hand and hand with getting more tenants on the Boards of housing organisations. Just because we live in social housing, it does not make us stupid and not capable of working with our provider to improve our services.
It is the tenants who live in the properties and wouldn’t you think that we would have an idea what needs to improve, we have local knowledge which is invaluable.
Not all organisations support tenant involvement. Even though involved tenants are aware of what the skills and expertise they can offer. What do we need to do to bring these into the fold? We spend a lot of time talking to each other and not very much time talking to the organisations that seem not to want tenant involvement.
Not everybody wants to own their own homes and saddle themselves with a 25 year mortgage even if the Government seems to think we do. On the other hand not everybody has found themselves in social housing due to choice, as I did myself. If I hadn’t have chosen to bid for my flat I would have been homeless.
To be honest that was the best thing I have done for many years. I now have security. A decent home and all the services that go with it.
#Housingday is important as we have a window to share our views and experiences. We should be shouting loud and clear that we want to be heard and we shall be heard.
We should make every effort to brake of the shackles of stigma. Just because we live in social housing we are not lost causes. We are proud people working with our providers to improve our homes, our environment, our lives and our communities. Never forget what we are about and who we really are. But let’s involve those tenants who are not as involved as we are.
Being an involved tenant has given me opportunities to do things I would not have had the chance to do before. It has opened doors for me to represent my fellow tenants in a positive way I hope.
There is so much to say that is positive to me as a tenant and I want you to share those moments, so come on let others benefit from some of your time. Please support the call for a National Tenants Voice.
Tenant Board Member