Tenant Scrutiny Information Sheet
What is scrutiny?
Scrutiny is a close examination or inspection. It’s about residents having the opportunity to look at the services they receive and test whether they are as good as they can be through a range of methods.
In tenant-led scrutiny, the tenants decide what to look at and the methods they will use to gain a full understanding of the service in question. This could involve:
Why are we asking Tenants to do this – why tenants?
Previously (before April 2012), there was a Housing Regulator, called the Tenant Services Authority – they inspected housing organisations and made judgements about how good the services provided to tenants were (a bit like OFSTED do in schools).
From April 2012, however, no external inspections will be undertaken to look at the quality of the services that are provided to tenants. Instead, a new system of co-regulation has been developed which puts tenants and residents at the heart of the process and gives them the opportunity to ensure that the services provided to them are of a high standard.
So is it all about pointing out what Hackney Council don’t do well?
Tenant-led scrutiny is about being a ‘critical friend’. It’s about highlighting what works really well, as well as what could be improved. The most important thing is that it is undertaken by tenants who:
Is it a bit like monitoring then?
Not really. Monitoring is about routine gathering of information and providing feedback on progress. Scrutiny is much more dynamic than that. It looks much more closely and is all planned by residents.
Will tenants get any help with any of this?
Yes. Hackney Council have recruited TPAS Associate, Richard Tomkinson to provide independent guidance, training and support throughout the process. Richard has many years’ experience of supporting tenants to play a full and active role in effectively scrutinising their landlord’s service. He will guide them through the process and provide all the training and support needed to carry out their role on the Tenant Scrutiny Panel.
Hackney Housing Tenant Scrutiny Panel
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