Riverside responds to the Social Housing Green Paper

Roof tops in Headingley, Leeds.

The government’s long-awaited Social Housing Green Paper has been published today. The Green Paper sets out 5 core themes:

  • Tackling stigma and celebrating thriving communities
  • Expanding supply and supporting home ownership
  • Effective resolution of complaints
  • Empowering residents and strengthening the regulator
  • Ensuring homes are safe and decent

A consultation has been launched alongside the Green Paper which seeks views on the proposals for the future of social housing.

We welcome the Social Housing Green Paper after a long delay and we are pleased that the government is listening to tenants with moves to empower tenants and strengthen their voice – at Riverside we are committed to this and have been strengthening our own customer voice.

There is still considerable detail to work through, and we look forward to responding to the consultation and the additional call for evidence about the future of regulation. It is important that we maintain an effective system of regulation which focuses on outcomes and, above all, puts the interests of current and future tenants at its heart.

We also welcome a review into the use of receipts from Right to Buy sales to ensure that tenants’ aspirations are met but in a way that does not diminish the overall social housing stock.

However, we share the sector’s disappointment that further investment to build genuinely affordable housing to make a real difference in tackling the housing crisis has not been announced. While we are pleased that the government recognises the stigma faced by social housing tenants, this can only be truly addressed once social housing becomes a tenure of choice and a benefit system is in place which covers housing costs in full for those who need support. Without investment to increase the supply of social housing, we will continue to see people fall through the safety net and suffer unnecessary hardship.