Hackitt Review spells step change for resident involvement

Released today, Dame Judith Hackitt’s report spells out a new way forward for Building Safety.

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It also proposes a fundamentally different approach to Resident Involvement for the Government to consider for its forthcoming Social Housing Green Paper.

Its starting point is that residents need to be at the heart of the new approach to building safety.

This includes transparency on information that supports resident understanding of building safety, including the right to access Fire Risk Assessments and other relevant information.

It also requires there to be a Resident Engagement Strategy in place. This would include how information is shared and resident rights and responsibilities.

It would ensure residents were involved in and consulted on the decision making process for work that impacts on resident safety.

The needs of all residents, including vulnerable, would be taken into account.

The Strategy would guarantee that resident voices would be heard if they raise genuine concerns. If residents remained concerned they would have a quick and clear route to an independent body, with enforcement powers, to escalate their concerns.

Finally it proposes there be funding for national and local organisations that support effective resident engagement across all tenures.

These core principles – transparency of information, involvement in decision making, opportunity for redress and support for good practice don’t just apply to building safety, vital as it is, but more widely to all services provided for tenants and leaseholders.

Much of this has been trailed before and the core principles are ones that will support and promote effective running of housing.

The Social Housing Green paper will be the opportunity for Government to consult further on how best to ensure transparency and meaningful resident involvement.

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