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Welfare Reform on the Web (July 2000): Social Housing - UK

ALLOCATION POLICIES: FACTS AND FANTASIES

A. Murie

Axis, Apr./May 2000, p. 6-7

It has been suggested that changes to allocation policies might solve some of the problems of social housing. Author argues that we know too little about the operation of such policies, and need clear evidence on which to base policy change.

BEST VALUE FOR EXTRA CARE SERVICES: GOING BEYOND SIMPLE MEASURES

S. Mitchell

Housing, Care and Support, vol. 3, Mar. 2000, p. 29-31

The Eastleigh Housing Association Pilot is the first applying best value principles to extra care services to frail elderly tenants. Eastleigh is in the early stages of developing a care self-assessment model, which, it is hoped, will enable like-for-like comparison across the care profession and in turn facilitate learning and sharing of good practice across the sector.

BUILDING CASH RESERVES

S. Randall

Municipal Journal, Apr. 28th - May 4th 2000, p. 19

Comments on the proposal in the housing green paper "Quality and Choice" to allow local authorities which have established arms-length management companies to manage their housing stock, to retain and use more of their rental income to finance borrowing for investment in stock improvement.

THE CHANGING MANAGEMENT OF SOCIAL HOUSING: THE IMPACT OF EXTERNALISATION AND MANAGERIALISATION

R. M. Walker

Housing Studies, vol. 15, 2000, p. 281-299

The processes of externalisation and managerialisation have served to fundamentally restructure the housing profession, housing organisations and housing management. A more rationalistic approach to management has led to housing associations specifying more clearly their care business objectives as determined by financial institutions and the regulator. The regulator has recently sought to add the needs of tenants in their communities to the list of core business objectives through housing plus the ongoing financial pressures on associations suggest that the two organisational objectives of property management and community development are going to be held in tension for some time to come.

CHOICE WORDS

T. Dwelly

Roof, May/June 2000, p. 18-21

Analyses the thinking behind the major new proposals on housing legislation put forward in "Quality and Choice: a decent home for all" green paper. The proposals include:

  • raising the quality of social housing;
  • transferring 200,000 homes out of local authorities' contro;
  • removing the restriction that temporary housing need only be provided for two years;
  • establishing arms length housing companies to manage the stock;
  • rents to be restructured to reflect the size, quality and location of the home.

THE DEVIL IN THE DETAIL

J. Ickenham

Municipal Journal, 21st - 27th Apr. 2000, p. 22

Comments on the proposal in the Housing Green Paper for the creation of arm's length housing companies, wholly owned by councils but managed separately.

FOR SALE: RURAL COMMUNITIES

E. Hawkey

Housing, Apr. 2000, p. 26-27

The right to buy council houses has been abused in rural communities by tenants purchasing their homes cheaply and then reselling to incomers at vast profit. This is now causing a shortage of affordable rented housing for local people.

GIANT STEP BACKWARDS

A. Power

Guardian. Society, Apr. 12th 2000, p. 6-7

Argues in favour of the transfer of council housing stock to locally based, hands-on and community-focused housing associations and housing companies.

A LONDON OVERVIEW

D. Bowie

Axis, Apr. - May 2000, p. 8-9

Explains that local authorities in London are facing the dilemma of having to cope with an immediate crisis of unmet housing demand while trying to pursue longer term regeneration and social inclusion objectives.

PERFORMANCE INDICATORS AND SOCIAL CONSTRUCTIVISM: CONFLICT AND CONTROL IN HOUSING MANAGEMENT

K. Jacobs and T. Manzi

Critical Social Policy, issue 62, 2000, p. 85-103

As practitioners prepare to implement "best value" models in housing management, it is clear that the measurement and evaluation of all aspects of service provision will have significant organisational consequences. The performance indicators introduced as part of best value are viewed by staff as a key management control strategy, which they resist by subverting operations and manipulating data. The level of attention devoted to meeting targets can, on the other hand, become all consuming, diverting resources from less quantifiable functions such as welfare and tenancy support. PIs can also result in a series of unintended adverse consequences, such as undermining individual autonomy, discretion, innovation and diversity.

PFI AND LOCAL AUTHORITIES

I. Graham

Axis, Apr. - May 2000, p. 16-17

The government has identified eight 'pathfinder' projects to pilot the use of PFI by local authorities for stock improvement. Article looks at how PFI projects might be structured from a legal and practical point of view.

PROMOTING ORDINARY HOUSING: THE ROLE OF THE VOLUNTARY SECTOR

D. Davidson

Mental Health Review, vol. 5, Mar. 2000, p. 24-26

The Supporting People initiative and the National Service Framework for mental Health provide the voluntary sector with an opportunity to extend the range of supported accommodation it can offer, tailoring its services to meet users' needs for an ordinary life.

SOCIAL HOUSING AND THE NATIONAL SERVICE FRAMEWORK FOR MENTAL HEALTH

E. Greenwood

Housing, Care and Support, vol. 3, Mar. 2000, p. 17-20

Explores the challenges presented to social housing by proposed reform of the Mental Health Act and the Mental Health National Service Framework. These include non-involvement of housing providers in care planning, preparation for Supporting People, and the need to improve training.

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