Tenant Scrutiny in Leeds
A study of tenant involvement processes in four social landlords in Leeds has mapped out the changes needed to give tenants real powers of scrutiny. The research commissioned by Leeds Tenants Federation points the way for tenants to hold their housing providers to account.
Social housing providers need to achieve a step change in their relationship with tenants to achieve the model of tenant scrutiny set out in the new regulatory framework. It means establishing a tenant-led structure that gives tenants real power to hold the organisation to account, to lead the agenda of service review and to get redress when things go wrong.
The report by Burkitt Vernelle Training and Consultancy for Leeds Tenants Federation sets out a number of recommendations for changes that would allow Leeds housing providers to meet the new standards. It argues in particular that social landlords need to see their tenants as stakeholders who have a right to make decisions about the service, rather than customers who are to be communicated with and allowed to give feedback.
The research reveals how social landlords collect a range of feedback and views from tenants via focus group and panels but often fail to act on the information or use it to provide continuous and tenant-led service improvement. It urges social landlords to review their scrutiny arrangements to ensure that tenants set the agenda and that they have the resources to act independently.
The report into tenant scrutiny maps out a major role for Leeds Tenants Federation in considering collective complaints about all social landlords operating in the city and awarding external accreditation through resident-led regulation.
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