There are many reasons behind this important work, not least the tragic fire which took place at Grenfell Tower in 2017, and the consequent lack of trust in landlords felt by many tenants across the country.
We’re really proud of the ways our tenants already share their voices with us to influence their experience as social housing tenants, but we also know that there’s always opportunities to grow this further. We jumped at the chance to get involved and, along with other housing associations, a number of our tenants, customers and staff met with the team at the National Housing Federation to take part in workshops, conversations and events.
The findings from this 2-month consultation led to the national launch of Together with Tenants – a collective ambition to build a collaborative, balanced relationship between housing associations and their tenants. 130 housing associations – including us! – are signed up, and we’re looking at how we can work differently with our tenants in the future, particularly around the new Together with Tenants four-point plan to drive change.
At our first Together With Tenants meeting – a working group of housing associations, ALMOs and local authorities from Sheffield City Region – Ed Miliband agreed to come along to speak about Shelter’s Vision for Social Housing report. Ed Miliband was one of the commissioners for the report, and Chapter 6 is all about the relationship between social housing tenants and their landlords.
We’re continuing to work with this group and our tenants to deliver real change (our second meeting focused entirely on the climate crisis) and in summer 2020, we’ll meet with Ed Miliband again to report on the progress we’ve made.