We want to reassure our customers that our teams are working hard on our response to the current Coronavirus pandemic. We know how affecting this issue is for everyone.
In previous updates, we told you about changes to how we delivered certain functions. The government advice on social distancing, and steps we now all need to take to control the virus, have ramped up significantly over the past few days. So, we now need to take the following steps to ensure we are supporting the national efforts to control this risk.
Our priority now is to reduce footfall to all of our buildings as much as is practical for each building, which is an essential step in supporting the control of this virus. It is not possible for us to close all of our buildings, as many of them accommodate critical care and support services for our customers. We have already taken steps to enforce social distancing in these environments i.e. through the closure of communal areas. However, we now need to go further and restrict access to external visitors to these buildings. We are asking that essential visits are only carried out from family members (e.g. to deliver food) and that they are limited. This is so we can have some confidence that social distancing and hygiene measures are being applied, as we have to accommodate a high number of people that are deemed vulnerable.
In line with the principle that we will restrict use of buildings as much as is practical, our Rockingham Street office will temporarily close. Rockingham Street will be closed from today, and please be assured that many functions that are carried out from our Rockingham Street office – such as reporting repairs, rent accounting, and reporting any anti-social behaviour – can be carried out remotely.
At South Yorkshire Housing Association, like the NHS and others, we are delivering services which cannot be totally suspended during this time. We have categorised our services in LiveWell and identified those that will need some physical staff presence in the service during this time.
Some of our other community based and other services in LiveWell will, from today, move to telephone support only if they have not already done so. The quality of this support will be as good as it can possibly be in order to ensure that we keep people safe and well during this crisis.
From today, we will only be operating emergency repairs through our Home Maintenance Team and external contractors. This will help us maintain our social distancing measures, and we will communicate any changes to this arrangement as the situation develops over the coming weeks.
We appreciate your patience during this unprecedented time.