Landlords not showing leadership, claims report
Housing providers are not showing enough leadership in tackling fears of migration and are failing to embrace their roles as social landlords, a new report says.
UK migration: the leadership role of housing providers today was published today by The Joseph Rowntree Foundation and said cuts to migrant services were making competition and perceived competition for homes with settled communities worse.
The report also said leadership needed to be shown at regional as opposed to national levels to combat anxieties and social landlords must step up to the role.
John Perry, author of the report and policy adviser to the CIH, said: ‘Leadership is vital at all levels, but there is a particular case to be made for effective leadership at regional and local levels, since this is where the main challenges have to be faced.
‘The paper also argues that housing authorities and social landlords have a vital role to play.
‘They can themselves provide leadership. They can also help to promote leadership within the neighbourhoods where they work.’
The foundation said providers should be using their expertise of communities to engage with people and create conversations about what type of area people want to live in and how migrants can be part of that.
Mr Perry said: ‘There is potential for those housing associations that have a strong base in local neighbourhoods to take a lead role in linking migrant community organisations with service providers, including local authorities and large social landlords.’
He added: ’ Housing providers operating at the cutting edge of cohesion and integration can help to reach excluded and isolated groups; they can play an important leadership role in bridging or brokering partnerships, and can take a lead in encouraging integration by, for example, being proactive in supporting community development approaches that bring different groups together or providing work placements within their organisation.’
Nancy Kelley, deputy director for policy research at Joseph Rowntree, told Inside Housing that while there was a lot of good practice, some landlords were not focussing on their social responsibility and only seeing tenants for rent.
Ms Kelley said: ‘They [providers] must accept migration as something which is happening and channel their focus there. This must be seen as a positive experience.’