n this update, we have focussed on the headline governance and regulatory issues that are facing RPs at this time. as we all deal with the Covid-19 crisis.
“The ResPublica Report correctly identifies a disconnect between some housing associations and the communities around them, which are typically in more deprived areas. What the report has highlighted is two crucial points: firstly that these communities are bearing the brunt of the cuts and are most likely to have reduced public services, and secondly that they are the least enabled and equipped to respond to the changes effectively.
“The document shows that communities need effective support to really take advantage of their new rights under the Localism Act. Fewer and fewer publicly funded organisations have the capacity or the engagement role to react appropriately, particularly with the loss of community contact points such as libraries and Citizens Advice Bureaus. With local authorities cutting back on expenditure and focusing on delivering only core services, housing associations have become one of the few organisations that are equipped to engage with and respond to wider community needs.
“As the core purpose of housing associations has changed rapidly over the last few years, the report encouragingly shows that a number of housing associations are moving toward becoming more holistic neighbourhood organisations rather than just providers of housing. It is essential that national policy such as the Public Service (Social Value) Act 2012 expands its remit to cover this sector, meaning that housing associations that already apply its principles are acknowledged, and those that as yet do not are encouraged to do so.”
The law surrounding organ donation has changed. The Organ Donation (Deemed Consent) Bill came into effect on 20 May 2020 and has implemented an opt-out system for organ donation.
Commercial and local authority landlords could benefit from urgently reviewing their legal options.
The Cabinet Office has published guidance asking for people to act responsibly, fairly and “in the national interest”.
To help our charity clients look to the future, we summarise key guidance and updates over the last week.
On 18 May 2020, the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) wrote to all social housing residents in England (residents).
For anyone who is currently restrained from holding their General Meeting or have held such in breach of their governing documents, help is on the way!
Social landlords may be surprised to learn that “landlords should be able to carry out routine as well as essential repairs for most households”.
Many housing providers are now re-thinking about gathering information to complete their data return to the Regulator of Social Housing, with the initial exercise having been delayed by Covid-19.
With many premises being left unoccupied (or minimally occupied) during the lockdown, both Public Health England and the Health and Safety Executive have warned of the increased risks of Legionella.
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