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Ask the Housing Minister

Ask the Housing Minister

An opportunity not to be missed...

Getting the chance to give your views on being a social housing tenant directly to the Housing Minister doesn’t happen every day. So when some of Orwell’s involved tenants were invited to a consultation event with Housing Minister, Alok Sharma, they jumped at the chance. 

Residents attending the ministerial event Nine Orwell tenants took up the invitation to go along to the event which was held at the Granary Barns a conference center in a small village near Newmarket. Not the easiest place to get to so Orwell put on a mini bus for some of the tenants, whilst others made their own way. 

Over 100 social housing tenants from all over the region attended the consultation event. They were invited to share their views around tables of ten with housing professionals and key personnel from both the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Cabinet Office.  Lively discussions took place with sympathies shared and themes identified all of which will go towards shaping a government green paper on Social Housing being produced.

When the discussions were finished each table fed back what they felt were the three most important issues raised on their table. These were all recorded to be added to comments raised from further consultation events taking place around the country. 

Everyone at the event was then invited to voice any issues they felt had not been covered from the round table discussions. Several things were raised and compliments on the way the day had been run were voiced.  Lastly a young Orwell tenant stood up to explain the plight of young people within the benefit system living in temporary accommodation. It was an emotional and very powerful speech that touched everyone in the hall and hopefully will be taken on board by the Government. 

The Grenville Tower fire tragedy raised a lot of issues and concerns relating to social housing and having an effective voice for tenants. As a result of this the government is looking into how to address these. This consultation event was the first of a series being carried out by the Housing Minister Alok Sharma to consult with social housing tenants from all over the country. The events are being held to help inform a social housing green paper and the a new national approach going forward.

Alok Sharma MP is still looking for further input from social housing tenants. If you have anything that you feel he should know that could influence the social housing green paper being produced contact: Diane Piperno; email diane.piperno@orwell-housing.co.uk Text 07725 200594. We will pass you views on to the Housing Minister to be included.

Find out more about Government green papers here 

Related links about this topic:

Housing Minister hosts first tenants' event

Re-thinking our relationships – have we lost the tenants’ voice?