CWAG News Update - March 2018

29 March 2018: CWAG News Update - March 2018


 This update includes information and links to the following topics: 

·         Member Policy Briefing - Social Housing Green Paper and More
·         CWAG General Meeting – Homelessness Reduction Act – Notes and Papers
·         CWAG Annual Review
·         New documents in the library / Recent Publications
 Policy Briefing - Social Housing Green Paper and More!

  An important consequence of the Grenfell Fire has been a widening public debate around the future of social housing. The housing sector was quick to respond and a number of parallel reviews and policy discussions are underway which are seeking to influence the Green Paper.

CWAG has been in discussion with the LGA, NFA and ARCH as well as meeting with MHCLG officials working on the Green Paper. The Green Paper is likely to have major implications for all council landlords and it is important to prepare so as to be in a position to influence the debate and make the case for housing.
This policy briefing was discussed at the CWAG General Meeting on 23rd March 2018. It gives an overview of the background to the development of the Green Paper and discusses the key issues and themes that are likely to affect local authority landlords.
CWAG General Meeting 23rd March 2018 - The Implications of the Homelessness Reduction Act for Councils with ALMOs
Faye Greaves from CIH led a workshop session considering the implications of the Homelessness Reduction Act for CWAG members. Faye is passionate about her subject and guided us through the background to the Act and the implications for councils and their ALMOs, depending on whether the responsibility is retained by the council or has been delegated.
Although the duties themselves are not new, they involve a massive change in culture. What previously was essentially a box ticking exercise to determine eligibility is to be replaced with a much more collaborative approach to prevent homelessness. This will require a new way of engaging with those threatened with homelessness to develop personalised housing plans, as well as establishing new services, partnerships and protocols to deliver a different kind of homelessness service.
Additional CIH Guidance
CWAG Annual Review
Review of the activities and achievements of the group against work-plan objectives covering the 12 month period from April 2017 to March 2018.
Recent Publications
·         Consultations on the Overhaul of Planning Policy - Closing date 10th May 2018
·         Guidance on how local authorities should exercise their homelessness functions in accordance with the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 (from 3rd April 2018)
·         Improving Health and Care through the Home - A National Memorandum of Understanding
·         Consultation - Strengthening consumer redress in the housing market - Housing has a number of different complaints bodies and redress arrangements covering different parts of the market; the consultation sets out an overview of current arrangements and seeks views on future changes            including the option of a single Housing Ombudsman. Closing date 16th April 2018.
·         Council Leaseholders have too many powers - Comment Piece by Eamon McGoldrick for Inside Housing February 2018
·         ‘Using the Social Housing Green Paper to boost the supply of low-cost rented homes’- Joseph Rowntree Foundation
·         ‘Overcoming the stigma of social housing’ Report commissioned by the Benefit to Society Campaign based on research by Professor Anne Power and Dr. Bert Provan