Join the conversation

Housing Services would like tenants and leaseholders to join the conversation and make things better for everybody.

What do we want to talk about?

We want to have conversations with you about a wide range of things, for example:

  • The national picture – what the government is saying and what that means for you and how you feel about it. For example, last year the government published a consultation document (the Social Housing Green Paper) asking for feedback on a range of changes they are considering introducing. Those changes include:
  1. whether or not to continue offering flexible (fixed term) tenancies
  2. improving the way complaints are handled to make the process quicker and more focused on resolution and consumer redress
  3. bringing back inspections for social housing providers and making the regulation of social housing stronger
  4. introducing penalties for housing providers who continually fail to provide good services – or continue to fail to abide by the law and/or regulation.
  • We want to talk to you about the proposed changes to find out what you think about them. We think you might be interested in hearing what we think about them too. By having a ‘conversation’ we can reach a consensus on our approach to the changes.
  • We received a lot of feedback from residents through last year’s satisfaction survey. We would like to have a conversation to understand what the feedback means and how we can respond to it to make a positive difference.
  • What’s it like to live in your home and your neighbourhood? What’s it really like? Our officers may have a fairly good idea of what it’s like, but we want to hear your perspective, as a resident.
  • What should our priorities be? Are we right to be focusing our efforts, for example, on parking issues and estate cleanliness, or are other issues more important to the people who live there?
  • What is it like being a Slough Borough Council tenant or leaseholder? What are your experiences and what can we do to improve things?

So, how can you join a conversation?

If you already meet up with other local people, for example at an exercise session, craft group or lunch club, why don’t you start a conversation about your neighbourhood and community? As a group with a common purpose or concerns, your voice and your opinions can have more impact than those of one person with a single point of view.

You can tell us about your conversation and any views or concerns you share by filling in our online form.

Alternatively, you can write to the address below:
Colin Moone
Housing Services Lead
Slough Borough Council
St Martins Place
Slough
SL1 3UF

We’d love to hear about your group, what you do, where you meet and what, if anything, we might be able to do to support you and help your group grow. It’s not just about joining in with something we, Housing Services, organise and run, it’s about telling us what you are talking about amongst yourselves and in groups you are already part of.

Facebook and social media

We are exploring (with the intention of offering) closed Facebook groups for each of our neighbourhood teams to offer residents a place to discuss local issues and to engage with their housing team. Using these groups will mean you can join (or, indeed, start) a conversation at a time that is convenient to you. If you would be interested in registering to join one of the closed groups, please let us know by completing the online form.

Resident Inspectors

The role of a Resident Inspector is currently being developed and we’d love to hear your thoughts on what they should do.

Our thinking so far is that Resident Inspectors could audit or test services to check we are doing what we say we will do and we are providing good quality services to residents. This could be achieved in different ways according to your personal circumstances and the amount of time you are able to spend on this, for example:

  • reviewing documentation (either by email or hard copy) to check it is clear, easy to understand and that the content achieves what is intended
  • testing our customer services by visiting or calling us and telling us how we did
  • inspecting the shared areas where you live and letting us know if any repairs are needed or we need to clean or tidy up more
  • joining a conversation about a service review (by email, online or face to face workshop) to look at what we want to deliver and the best way to achieve that
  • carrying out audits to test the quality of the services we deliver.

As a Resident Inspector you will decide how much you want to do (depending on how much time you have available) and how you want to do it.

If you don’t want to attend a meeting, you could join the conversation by email or social media. You may decide the topic of the conversation is of no interest to you, but we might want to talk about something that is important to you and you want to be part of that conversation.

It’s entirely up to you. All you need to do is to let us know the best way of contacting you so we can tell you what we are talking about and how you can join the conversation. You can do this by filling in the online form or calling us on 01753 477220.

These are just some of the ways you can join the conversation and we will be listening to what you tell us and looking at other ways we can talk. For example, we are currently thinking about holding a housing conference later this year – would this be something you would be interested in? If not, why not? What would you want from a housing conference?

What’s in it for you?

We value the time people take to talk to us, but what’s in it for you? Well, for one thing, you can add your views to a conversation and know they will be taken into account when decisions are made. Some other benefits are listed below.

  • Access to training – this could be face to face training, e-learning or perhaps you can think of another, better way for us to deliver training to help you to be fully engaged in a conversation?
  • Meeting new people, making contact with and developing a better relationship with your neighbours.
  • Making a difference – changing things that matter to you and your neighbours to make life easier for everyone.
  • Getting something that irritates you off your chest – but in a way that informs the people (us) who can do something about it.

In return, we will:

  • pay any out of pocket expenses you incur, e.g. travel or the cost of telephone calls etc.
  • make sure you have all of the information you need to decide whether or not you want to be involved in a conversation, e.g.
  1. the topic of conversation
  2. how much time will be involved
  3. how we will be having the conversation – telephone, email etc.
  4. what we want to achieve as a result of the conversation
  5. any training we can offer to make sure you can fully engage in the conversation
  • tell you what has changed or what we will do as a result of the conversation – and update you as things progress.

Get in touch

If you would like to be more involved, please complete the online form, or email getinvolved@slough.gov.uk

Fill in our survey