As we draw a close to our Health and Safety week, we have pulled together ten of the key points our tenant and landlord speaker shared

As we draw a close to our Health and Safety week, we have pulled together ten of the key points our tenant and landlord speaker shared:

  1. Gill Kernick, author of “Catastrope and Systemic Change: Learning from the Grenfell Fire and other Disasters” emphasised that we fail to learn from disasters because we take a piecemeal approach rather than focussing on systematic change. According to Gill, resident engagement tends to be a piecemeal approach – we need to take steps to change this.
  1. Mike Corrigan from Welsh Government introduced his role at Welsh Government as a Resident Reform Policy Manager. This role will ensure residents have a voice in shaping Building Safety; not as a tokenistic tick box exercise, but in a way that is meaningful so that tenants know their rights and responsibilities.
  1. The importance of partnerships came up time and time again over the week, specifically the significance of partnering with Fire Rescue teams, ensuring consistent messaging across different counties and joint branding with Housing Associations and Local Authorities
  1. Community Housing Cymru (CHC) have developed a framework which supports housing associations to achieve and maintain a transparent approach to health and safety matters with their residents. The aim is to ensure responsiveness and empowerment of tenants in Health and Safety matters
  1. Phoenix Housing Association focussed on Wellbeing, not just Health and Safety when they developed their model for tenant involvement. They fully fund accredited courses for tenants and advertise these through the health and safety committee. Phoenix tenants and staff believe their success is related to the trusting relationships and culture of the organisation
  1. Double award-winning Stockport Homes shared their involvement strategy around retrofitting sprinklers. They ensure that every decision they make includes tenants, through tapping into communities and always feeding back the outcomes. They developed a suite of infographics for those with lower reading age and for those whose first language isn’t English
  1. Some key learning points for those developing marketing and comms. Look at different learning styles and mechanisms. Look at your Google analytics and see which tenants you aren’t reaching and ask yourself ‘how we can reach them’. Don’t be afraid to try new methods such as TikTok and sending tenants video messages. Finally, don’t overlook those who are digitally excluded, get out there, be with residents, make a phone call; do whatever you need to do to keep tenants involved in the decisions that impact their lives.
  1. Feedback and critique are your biggest assets. Don’t shy away from them. Landlords have a responsibility to provide reassurance to tenants so make sure you demonstrate how you use that feedback.
  1. The White Paper for Building Safety sets out the need for widespread cultural change and the importance of accountability. 3 key areas are 1) The Resident Engagement strategy which should be tailored to tenants needs 2) Complaints process and procedures are fit for purpose and 3) Responsibilities of tenants to ensure everyone is taking care of each other.
  1. Co-designing information and sharing information so that tenants feel safe in their homes is a key element to success. For example, publishing compliance information using infographics. We need to think about ‘Crisis Communication’ for example, a video from the Health and Safety lead or CEO to reassure tenants. This needs to be timely, open, and transparent. Landlords need to be aware of tenant's feelings relating to health and safety issues and can create an obvious click button on the website for reporting health and safety concerns.

We would like to thank our sponsors FireAngel and all our guest speakers for sharing such valuable insights.

Do keep an eye out on our events page for our upcoming events, training, and webinars.