How we are responding to the pandemic, to help keep our customers safe
Following Government advice, we are committed to keeping our priority services running throughout this pandemic. As we try to resume our services as best as we can, follow our latest updates here.
Resources and service information as of January 2022
Following the increase in cases of the Omicron variant and the Government move to "Plan B", we are encouraging staff to work from home if possible and if they do feel unwell, that they complete a lateral flow test (LFT) before coming into work. We also ask that colleagues and visitors wear masks when moving around the buildings and in public spaces. Our cleaning regime will remain in place in all locations.
Our Housing Management, Neighbourhood Warden and Lettings activity will continue in accordance with Covid-19 secure safety guidelines and customer contact will be by phone or digital media, wherever possible.
Please note, if your Housing Officer needs to visit you, they will contact you prior to the visit to clarify requirements, and all visits must adhere to our Covid-19 secure safety guidelines to protect both you and the visiting Officer.
Lettings will continue but we will look to keep face-to-face contact as limited as possible – keys can either be delivered to a letterbox or left at our Head Office in Foley Grove.
Estate inspections will be carried out as normal to help address issues, such as fly tipping, untidy gardens and any grounds maintenance issues.
We understand that everyone’s circumstances are different at this time and some people may have lost their jobs or struggling due to work closures. If you are concerned about your rent, there are some steps you can take.
Check your balance
Make a payment
If you are having difficulties in paying your rent
You must let us know as soon as possible. You can talk to us by contacting the Income Management Team.
Help getting back to work?
If you have recently lost your job or are long term unemployed we can help you. Our Building Better Opportunities team of experienced Job Coaches can:
- Discuss and support you to apply for Job Seeking benefits
- Provide you with telephone support to find and apply for jobs that are available
- Review your CV, suggest possible changes and make it stand out from the crowd
- Print your CV and post you copies so that you can use it to apply for jobs
- Practice your interview skills via telephone or social media video chat
If you are eligible, this support can be provided through regular video chats, phone calls and meetings when social distancing guidelines are relaxed. We can also look into training and developing your skills to help you find the right job.
The Building Better Opportunities project is funded by the European Social Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund.
You will find details of how you get help on our Financial Support page.
You can also check if you can claim any benefits through an online government benefits calculator.
Other advice agencies
The following agencies offer confidential advice services to help with any financial issues you may be experiencing.
We are experiencing some challenges with our repairs service at the moment so to get through this we are going to make a few temporary changes. Please view our short animation on our YouTube channel to explain this further.
We are still carrying out emergency repairs so please contact us on 0300 003 5454. The phone lines are very busy so you may have to wait in a queue, and we may need to ask you more questions than usual.
If you have a non-emergency repair, please continue to report through our website repairs page. However, please be aware that during this temporary period, there may be a slight delay with dealing with non-emergency repairs.
We are continuing to work safely and in line with Government guidance and where possible we will ask you to open windows to allow fresh air to circulate.
Our planned external upgrade programme is currently suspended and under review with the exception of agreed works. The modernisation programme is now back up and running.
Repairs to internal communal areas, including at the Independent Living and Extra Care Schemes, will continue unless a Scheme has confirmed Covid-19 cases onsite and then only emergency repairs will be completed.
We will continue to ensure statutory health & safety compliance checks (including routine servicing and maintenance) are undertaken across all our homes and communal areas.
Where self-isolation is taking place within a property or scheme, we will defer a visit until after the self-isolation period. If a significant health & safety risk is present, we will escalate this for decision and inform residents. We will ensure effective record keeping around attempts to make access and communicate our actions transparently.
Independent Living services
Our teams are operating as normal for the elderly and vulnerable with planned care and support visits within our Independent Living Schemes as scheduled and in line with risk assessments.
Staff are wearing the correct PPE to protect you.
Independent Living Schemes
We remain cautious and we will continue to protect ourselves and adapt a common sense approach to what we are doing.
- Visiting restrictions are now lifted but ask again, a common sense approach is given and not large numbers of family and friends visiting at the same time.
- Meeting outdoors is recommended.
- Risk assessments and control measures remain in place. Staff will continue to wear masks and PPE, and the cleaning regimes will continue on our schemes which will be reviewed monthly.
- We ask that you follow guidance, and we encourage the use of masks when moving around communal areas.
- Each scheme will have varied activities going ahead.
- In the event of an outbreak in any of the schemes, we will revert to a lockdown situation.
COVID-19 has not gone away, so it’s important to remember the actions you can take to keep yourself and others safe. Everybody needs to continue to act carefully and remain cautious.
Health and wellbeing
This is something that everyone will be experiencing to some level during the past few months. We have all experienced a real change to all our lives. Staying connected with family, friends and neighbours is important for our own mental wellbeing as well as theirs. Remain active and have a regular walk, simple jobs such as cleaning and climbing the stairs are all good for us. Learn a new skill such as cooking something different or learn how to sew or knit.