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DMU professor joins expert panel to advise government on improvements to social housing sector


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An expert researcher at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) has been called upon by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to join an expert panel to advise on improvements to the social housing sector. 

Professor Jo Richardson, Professor of Housing and Social Inclusion, and Associate Dean for Research and Innovation in the Faculty of Business and Law, joins a number of experts from across the housing sector who have been brought together to form the panel. 

Jo Richardson-1494

Representing DMU and also the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH), for which she is the 2021/22 president, Professor Richardson will have the opportunity to influence policy and advise government on the delivery of the social housing white paper. 

Published last year, the social housing white paper outlines a wide-ranging package of reforms to improve standards for residents and enhance regulation of the sector. 

 The reforms aim to deliver long-lasting and meaningful change – addressing safety issues, strengthening the complaints process, professionalising staff and rebalancing the relationship between resident and landlord. 

Eddie Hughes MP, Minister for Rough Sleeping and Housing, said: “Giving social housing residents a stronger voice and ensuring landlords raise standards is at the heart of our landmark reforms to transform the sector. 

 “The expert panel will help to ensure that we deliver on these reforms, bringing together people who will scrutinise our plans and guarantee we achieve the vision set out in the Charter.” 

The panel will meet four times over the next year to provide scrutiny and advice as the government implements the social housing white paper. This follows extensive engagement with residents, housing associations and other stakeholders. 

The government has already made progress to improve the quality and safety of social housing - launching a review of the Decent Homes Standard, a working group on electrical safety, and holding a consultation on smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, as well as running a national campaign to raise awareness of how to seek redress when things go wrong. 

The social housing white paper outlines that every social housing resident should expect to: 

  •  Be safe in your home 
  • Know how your landlord is performing 
  • Have your complaints dealt with promptly and fairly 
  • Be treated with respect 
  • Have your voice heard by your landlord 
  • Have a good quality home and neighbourhood to live in 
  • Be supported to take your first step to ownership. 

 Professor Richardson, who was made a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in 2019 thanks to her impactful work in the field, has conducted extensive research across management, social policy and public policy in the areas of social housing, accommodation and homelessness. 

Her campaign as president of the CIH – the professional body for those working in the housing sector – is called ‘Homeful’ and seeks to build on the success of the response to homelessness and rough sleeping during the pandemic, exploring housing-led approaches to resolve and prevent homelessness. 

 

Posted on Thursday 26th August 2021

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