We are working to ensure that we are following all COVID-19 Government guidance in order to prioritise the safety of staff and customers, whilst providing minimum impact on our services to you.
We are using several methods to help tackle the spread of Coronavirus. These include Risk Assessments, increased hygiene, training, communication and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
A risk assessment is looking at the hazards and risks, in this case Coronavirus and developing and implementing control measures to reduce the risk to be as low as practicle. You can click here to see a detailed risk assessment and all of our frontline staff have been consulted, communicated with and trained on their individual department risk assessments. In line with the Government guidance we are taking the following approach;
- We have reviewed our services and our utmost priority continues to be the safety of both our staff and our customers on the basis that the Covid-19 pandemic is still a threat.
- Risk assessments and service re-start plans are already being established, but we must ensure a safe working environment for our staff and we are only opening services we feel are critical or that can be undertaken safely.
Where the task is deemed critical or safe to complete, (click here for our service update) we will take the following actions;
- Maintain 2metre social distancing
- Increase hand hygiene and cleaning regimes
- Work from home where possible
- Provide any necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Keep employees working alone where possible
- Travel in separate vehicles where possible
- Provide any necessary PPE
- Train on new ways of working
- Provide additional plant and equipment
- Provide any necessary PPE
The risk assessments are being constantly reviewed and updated as new guidance is released. We will do all we can to share as much information with you on what measures we are taking and the reasons behind those measures.
We welcome any feedback from our customers on the effectiveness of such measures when they are in place. We also have a robust system for auditing these control measures to ensure that we are following our risk assessments, both internally and externally.
Hygiene both personal and environment has proven to be key in stopping the spread of the coronavirus. We have increased all cleaning regimes within our offices, depots, vehicles and business premises that our employees visit. All relevant employees have been provided with the correct equipment to ensure hygiene can be maintained including antibacterial sprays, antibacterial wipes, and antibacterial wipes along with methods of disposing of the cleaning products.
We will ensure that we train all of our staff with any new measures we put in place. The training will include the briefing of risk assessments, so that they are fully aware of the control measures that must be in place whilst completing their work.
Additional training on any new ways of working including the use of new equipment, PPE, and cleaning/hygiene processes. PPE will be provided to members of our staff for protection where it is deemed appropriate, especially during home visits so that your safety is put first.
Where any of our staff or contractors inform us of symptoms or test positive for Coronavirus, we will ensure we do everything reasonably practicable, the member of staff will follow the self-isolation guidance from the Government and we will provide any support they need.
All cases reported to us will be recorded within our Housing Management System to allow us to track cases and manage information given to us. Our customer service hub will be asking questions when we are in contact with customers in line with Government guidelines to ensure protection for our employees and customers.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
PPE are items that our employees can use to help protect themselves and people they meet. These items include items such as gloves, face masks, aprons, and overalls. From our risk assessments we have identified when and where these items are required and we have ensured that it is only as a last resort this is in line with government guidelines and will ensure PPE supplies are available for when they are required.
Self Isolating & Health
The wellbeing of our customers and colleagues is vital and we are focused on preventing the spread of the COVID-19 in line with Government guidelines. We would ask that if you are self-isolating or have any of the known symptoms listed here https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ that you let us know this when you speak to a member of our team.
Colleagues from the Trust will be making additional checks with customers when making emergency repair appointments to identify any risks to themselves or the wider public. Trust colleagues will also be subject to the same screening when visiting our customers.
If you have changed your phone number or email address recently please contact us to make sure we have the correct contact information on our system. Call us on 0300 303 9848 or Contact us . You can also update your details by downloading our new App click here for more information.
COVID-19 Information for Customers
Repairs Service Update January 2022
We know that Covid continues to be both a worrying and frustrating time for everyone. We want to thank customers for your ongoing understanding during this challenging time. Below is an update about our services.
- We are experiencing much higher colleague absence rates due to Covid & the 7* day isolation period (5 day isolation period effective from 17/1/22).
- Due to the pandemic we are seeing daily challenges that affect our workforce and customers. When our trades staff isolate, they cannot work. This can mean cancelling over 40 jobs they may have booked in for that week. This is influencing completion times for repairs which are taking longer to complete than normal, this is especially affecting larger works, where our colleagues need to be in properties for a number of days.
- When a colleague tells us they are isolating & cannot work, our customer hub staff will call immediately to rearrange the appointment. They will look at the appointment diary for the next available date but we are booking appointments further in advance than we would like to.
- We continue to book emergency repairs via 0300 303 9848, this service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
- Our customer hub team and out of hours call service are both experiencing high call demand and you may need to wait on hold for a short time, there is a call back service available should this occur.
- We encourage you to book standard repairs via our My Account app. The app is available all week including weekends and uses the same booking system as our phone lines, so appointments over the phone will not be any sooner than those booked via the app. Click here to register for free.
- Our colleagues are following Government guidelines which means daily testing is taking place on close contacts. Where these tests return negative, this means we may contact customers to bring a repair appointment forward at short notice.
- We are experiencing some delays with materials, but we are working hard to source alternative high quality materials, this may affect some appointment timescales.
- Our customer hub colleagues are working between their homes and our Head Office. We'd ask you to bear with our colleagues as they may have children at home isolating but we are answering your calls and here to help.
- We are actively recruiting new colleagues to help us.
December 2021, Government announced that England is moving into new enhanced Covid safety measures, known widely as 'Plan B'. We continue to assess all of our services and service provision, along with our Health & Safety practices. You can read an update here;
- At present we do not foresee any changes to the way our services are carried out.
- In line with the 'work from home directive', all colleagues, where able to, will continue to work from home.
- Our HQ reception will remain open for visitors and customers.
- All of our services remain available, more information can be found here.
We will continue to keep customers updated about any effects or changes to services.
We have a responsibility to keep our colleagues and customers safe. As the new Covid variant has brought about new H&S restrictions in England we have reviewed our Health & Safety risk assessments and processes and we can confirm all of our existing enhanced H&S processes and practices will continue to be in place for all of our colleagues.
We would ask that customers continue to;
- Wear a mask if our colleagues are working in your homes, if you are able to.
- Keep a social distance when our colleagues are in your homes
- Ventilate your home when our colleagues are in your homes
Our colleagues, who have appointments in customer homes, will continue to;
- Wear appropriate PPE for the work being undertaken including the wearing of masks
- Wipe down any surfaces before we start work, don’t be offended this is a H&S measure only
- Wipe down surfaces after we finish the work & bag up and take those wipes with us
We want to say thank you for your ongoing cooperation, we know that Covid and the associated impacts are frustrating but our number one priority is colleague and customer safety.
- You can report new routine repairs via our app, click here to download or by calling us on 0300 303 9848. Emergency repairs (including any necessary compliance checks / H&S related work or inspections) call 0300 303 9848.
- Our Head Office Our Head Office at Gadbrook Park is open including our reception service. We are running slightly reduced hours of 9am-4pm for Reception. All of our services remain available remotely.
- Our support teams continue to work a mixture of home and office working. Please visit the service pages on this site for more informartion.