Environmental Services to resume on Monday 6th April

In the interests of public health and hygiene, we have reviewed our earlier decision to temporarily put a stop to our environmental services and these will resume from Monday 6th April, with some important changes to how the services will be delivered.  We feel that during these challenging times, it is important that we continue to disinfect our common areas to try and help reduce the spread of coronavirus.  It is also important that our common areas and environment are kept clean and clear of refuse in order to prevent fire hazard and to control pests.

Our environmental services include close cleaning, back-court maintenance and bulk pull-out and grass-cutting/landscaping.  These services will resume according to the usual timetables, as far as possible.   The safety of our staff and residents is of paramount importance and we have taken steps to minimise the risk of cross contamination between staff members and residents during service delivery, as follows:

  • Staff will arrive on-site separately and will follow staggered start times to prevent any cross contamination.  Staff will work on the same street for safety reasons but will adhere to rules for social distancing.
  • During close cleaning, the first operative will press all buzzers to advise residents that they are cleaning the close, reminding them to stay within their homes as far as possible while cleaning takes place.
  • Signs will be placed at close entrances to advise that close cleaning is in progress and that access is prohibited during this time.
  • Cleaning will focus on the cleaning and disinfection of areas such as bannisters and intercoms to help restrict the spread of the virus.
  • Residents are asked not to engage with our staff in any circumstances during these operations.

We understand that some residents may have questions or concerns about our environmental services resuming, please do not hesitate to contact the Association on 763 0511 to discuss.  We will continue to monitor and review our environmental services as the current situation develops, and we would welcome your feedback on our services during these difficult times, so please do get in touch to share your views.  

We are here to help our residents

Association staff have been busy contacting older tenants and others that we know are in the ‘at risk’ category for Coronavirus. We want to make sure that everybody has somebody to help out – for food or medicine supplies or even just a friendly chat to keep spirits up. If you or anybody you know could do with some help at the present time, please give us a call. Although our office is shut, staff are working from home and there’s plenty we are still able to do to help. Call us on 763 0511 or email sha@shettleston.co.uk

Emergency Food Parcels

Easterhouse based community organisation, FARE, can supply emergency food packages to Shettleston residents who are in need due to illness/self isolation and have no other way of getting supplies and also to those experiencing serious financial difficulties in these difficult times. You can contact them on 771 9151 or 07799 502842.

Universal Credit – changes to how much you will get

From 6 April 2020, the government is increasing the standard allowance in Universal Credit and the basic element in Working Tax Credit for one year. Both will increase by £20 per week on top of planned annual uprating. This will apply to all new and existing Universal Credit claimants and to existing Working Tax Credit claimants.

This means that for a single Universal Credit claimant (aged 25 or over), the standard allowance will increase from £317.82 to £409.89 per month.

Covid 19: Update from Shettleston HA on 24th March 2020

Following the UK and Scottish Government announcements last night we have now made further changes to our services to help restrict the spread of the coronavirus.  This update provides details of some significant changes to our services that have taken effect from today, including changes to our repairs services, estate services, major projects and lettings.

  • Until further notice we will only be able to carry out emergency or very urgent repairs and essential safety checks like gas safety inspections.  Emergency repairs are only those which seriously affect the occupation of your property, by posing a danger to health and property or by making your home insecure. These include:

–          Burst pipes/leaks 

–          Water ingress 

–          Complete blockage of soil or waste pipes

–          Dangerous structural condition, e.g. falling masonry or roof tiles

–          Total lack of water and/or heating

–          Total loss of electrics/faulty electrics

–          Total loss of security due to broken windows or damaged door or broken lock/lost keys

–          Shower repair – only if no bath

–           Toilet not flushing/blocked (if only one in property)

–           Unsafe access to property

Our emergency contractor will attend to make safe, and undertake any work that they can to complete the repair and restore any loss of service.  In some cases this may mean a temporary repair, providing this leaves your home safe and secure and will not affect your occupation of the property.

To help our repairs team accurately assess the work required to be done, please email a photograph of the affected area to repairs@shettleston.co.uk where possible. 

We are aware that the Council’s pest control service has been suspended, therefore, in addition to the above, our emergency pest control contractor will attend to treat an infestation of rats, mice, squirrels only where these are within your property.

  • Our Estate Services, delivered through Upkeep, are now suspended.  This includes: close cleaning; back-court maintenance and bulk pull-out and grass-cutting/landscaping.
  • All major repair contracts  (e.g. window replacements) are also on hold.
  • All lettings work has been suspended.  If you require urgent rehousing then you should contact the homeless casework team on 0141 276 6152 or 0141 276 6153.

Please note  that whilst our office is closed our staff are still working and able to provide advice and support to tenants over the telephone or on-line.   If you are concerned about being able to pay your rent, or any other tenancy matter, then please contact us as soon as possible on the usual number to speak to your housing officer, welfare rights officer, money or energy adviser.

We will be continuing to provide updated information on our website and social media pages about Universal Credit and other benefit related matters.

During these difficult times, if you or a someone you know finds themselves in a crisis, please contact Social Care Direct, during office hours on 0141 287 0555 or on textphone 18001 0141 287 0555.  If you need this service outwith office hours, you can contact Glasgow and Partners Emergency Social Work Services on 0300 343 1505.

Please keep an eye on our website and Facebook page for further updates as the situation develops.

Due to the Coronavirus [Covid-19] outbreak, and in line with Scottish Government and NHS advice, the Association is making changes to some of our services, aimed at minimising risk to service users and staff.

Our office has now been closed to the public. For this reason, our drop in surgeries [allocations, welfare rights and Universal Credit] have been suspended until further notice.

We will continue to deliver our services and encourage you to contact us by phone or email. Where it is necessary to see a staff member in person, we will make an appointment for you.

You can contact us by phone:

0141 763 0511

You can contact us by email:

For repairs: repairsteam@shettleston.co.uk

For housing allocations: allocationsteam@shettleston.co.uk

For factoring: factoringteam@shettleston.co.uk

For general enquiries: sha@shettleston.co.uk

As you will appreciate, this is a fast moving situation and we may need to make further changes as we go forward. Please check our website and social media regularly for further service updates.

Coronavirus – Letter from CEO at Shettleston Housing Association

The following letter was sent to all tenants and factored owners on Friday 20th March:

Covid – 19 and Shettleston Housing Association

I hope that you and your family are as well as can be during these troubling and uncertain times.

The Association would like to assure you that we are committed to maintaining services as far as possible whilst also protecting the health and safety of our staff, service users and the wider public. This letter sets out the current position but, as you will be aware, the situation is fast moving so please check for updates on the following: · Our website www.shettleston.co.uk · Facebook – www.facebook.com/shettlestonha · Twitter – www.twitter.com/shettlestonha.

Our phone – 0141 763 0511 – we will leave any urgent message on our out-of-hours answering machine.

We will also text and e-mail updates so if you have a mobile phone and/or an e-mail address please text 07407 492 606 or email sha@shettleston.co.uk to confirm your up-to-date contact details.

Our office

The office is now closed to visitors and advice surgeries are suspended. For the time being, we will only see you in emergency situations. However, we will be continuing to provide a service over the phone through a mix of staff in the office and working from home. If you need to speak to someone, please call the usual office number (0141 763 0511) or the dedicated repairs line (0808 202 6565). You will be able either to speak to someone who can help you there and then or, if you leave a message, someone will call you back as soon as possible.

Please be aware that a call back may be from an unfamiliar number so you should take care to satisfy yourself that it is genuine by calling our office number.

Feeling vulnerable or alone?

We want to do as much as we can to support older and other more vulnerable tenants in the community during this crisis. If you need some help yourself, or are concerned about one of your neighbours or any other tenant, please contact us. We will do what we can to help and refer on to other services as necessary.

We will be continuing our own retirement housing and tenancy support service for as long as possible but the common room at Edrom Path is now closed and all clubs that operate from there have been suspended until further notice.

Worried about rent payments?

We know that, sadly, more tenants are likely to have money problems in the coming weeks and months, as the economy starts to suffer. Some may never have experienced such difficulties in the past. If you are worried about being able to pay your rent then please contact your housing officer as soon as possible. We will continue to be as supportive as possible in agreeing repayment arrangements and by offering expert advice and assistance over the phone to help you maximise your income eg, through claims for Universal Credit and other benefits. We will not evict any tenants for arrears that develop as a result of the Covid-19 crisis.

Rent Payments Options

You can continue to make rent payments in the following ways and we would encourage you to do so to avoid the build-up of unnecessary rent arrears.

· To set up a Direct Debit for rent payment, call the office on 0141 763 0511.

· If you pay rent using a rent card, you can use your card at any Post Office or shop displaying the e-pay or pay point symbols. · You can also use your card to pay by telephone on 0330 041 6497 or online at www.allpayments.net Both these services are available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.

Payments can also be made:

· Through the Allpay Smartphone app which can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play.

· By debit card by telephoning the office 0141 763 0511. These payments are processed by CALLPAY system from Allpay and are a quick and secure method of payment.

There is a Universal Credit helpline (0800 328 5644) if you don’t have an online account.

It will not be possible to pay your rent in person at the office for as long as it is closed to visitors. If you would like some more information on any of the above alternative methods, please give us a call.

Repairs

We will continue to provide a reactive repairs service for as long as possible but it is likely that some non-urgent repairs will have to wait. Please consider whether your repair can wait before contacting us. (See our website for definitions of emergency, urgent and routine repairs www.shettleston.co.uk)

  • Please telephone 0808 202 6565 or email repairsteam@shettleston.co.uk to report a repair.
  • If possible, email a photo or video of the repair and we will contact you to discuss whether the work can be carried out.
  • We will ask you some screening questions before we ask a contractor to attend to assess if it is safe or necessary to do so eg. Do you have either a high temperature/fever OR a new continuous cough?

If you answer yes then the contractor may not be able to attend. If it is an emergency and the contractor does attend they will ask you to wait in a separate room while they carry out the repair and may wear protective clothing while completing the work.

  • We are currently aiming to complete contract works that have already started but may need to suspend these in the near future. We will not be starting any new programmed contracts in the short term.
  • We expect we will get to the stage where we can only deliver emergency repairs. We will notify you if this is the case. Your non-emergency repair will be logged and carried out at a later date.
  • We will continue to undertake essential safety work like gas servicing and ask that you do all you can to provide access for this vital work. You will get a phone call, email or text rather than the usual letter confirming the appointment date.

All our contractors carry photo ID and you should make sure you see this before allowing them access to your home. If in doubt, call the office or repairs number.

Estate Services

· Our contractor, Upkeep, will continue to deliver our close cleaning, backcourt maintenance and landscaping services for as long as possible.

· Window cleaning in closes has been suspended for now to allow more time for cleaning bannisters, intercoms and close doors. A stronger disinfectant is also now being used.

· Glasgow City Council has suspended its bulk uplift service but Upkeep will continue to provide its bulk pull-out service, taking items directly to the dump.

Finally, please send us your thoughts and any suggestions on how we are delivering services and what else we might be able to do to support tenants and the wider community during this time.

Yours sincerely,

Tony Teasdale

CEO

Covid-19: Letter going out to all residents today

To update people on the Association’s response to the Covid-19 crisis, a letter is being sent out today to all tenants and factored owners. The situation may well change going forward and we will provide further updates on our website and via our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/shettlestonha).

Coronavirus and your benefits: some helpful information from DWP

Universal Credit:

From 18/03/2020 – New claims to Universal Credit will still be made on-line. All follow up appointments will now be done over the telephone via a return call from a member of staff from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP). Nobody will have to visit the office at any stage of making their new claim, except in exceptional circumstances. If you are unable to make your claim online please telephone the Universal Credit Helpline on 0800 328 5644. Existing Universal Credit claimants can still contact their Work Coach via their online journal or by phone if necessary.

As of 16 March 2020 all routine appointments at Jobcentres have been postponed. Those due to sign-on will be excused from signing. For those already receiving benefits, you will continue to receive your payments and rather than attend the office for appointments, Work Coaches will communicate with you via your on-line journal, the phone, or will simply reschedule appointments for a later date.

Info about attending health assessments:

Please note that face-to-face assessments for all benefits have been suspended for a period of 3 months from 16 March. Assessments for benefits will be carried out by telephone, or by considering medical evidence submitted by post. If you already have an appointment for assessment scheduled you will be contacted to cancel your appointment.

Please keep up to date with changes by visiting the DWP’s website: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-work-pensions

Coronavirus and claiming benefits

You can find some very useful and helpful information about claiming benefits amidst the coronavirus outbreak by clicking here. This page provides information for those in work and not claiming benefits, those claiming benefits, new claimants and for employers. This page is kept updated and provides links to other helpful resources too.