Tenants investigate River Clyde Homes’ Aids and Adaption process

(from left) Andrew Hurrell, Marion Wilson and Joyce Stephens
(from left) Andrew Hurrell, Marion Wilson and Joyce Stephens

River Clyde Homes’ Customer Senate has undertaken an investigation into its Aids and Adaptations process and has made 13 recommendations that aim to improve the service for customers and streamline the system for staff.

The purpose of the investigation, which was the second undertaken by the Senate, was to determine the cost effectiveness of the current process and to determine if the policy was being adhered to. In particular they wanted to understand the process of the allocation of a previously adapted house.

The Senate confirmed that River Clyde Homes was adhering to its current policy in all cases and had a sufficient amount of funding for the volume of requests received.

Customers who had received an aids and adaptations service during the previous 12 months were contacted by the Senate to give their feedback on the process. Twenty-nine agreed to take participate and home visits were made, postal questionnaires issued and phone surveys took place.

The types of adaptation included major works such as stair-lifts and walk in showers through to fitted handrails and raised toilet seats. Most adaptations were found to be made by self-referral or through GPs.

Recommendations included: carrying out a stock survey to allow a full picture of adapted properties to be identified, publishing user friendly leaflets to raise awareness of the policy, improved training for staff and a central database that is available to all staff. A centrally held list of all adapted properties across all Inverclyde housing associations was also suggested.

Marion Wilson, a Customer Senator who worked on the report, said: “This is the second investigation in which I’ve been involved. We used various methods of investigation. This included meeting with the services directly involved in the process, and contact was made with customers to request their participation. Telephone surveys and home visits were undertaken, and the Senate also compared the policies of other housing associations with our own. We hope that our findings make a difference for both customers and the staff involved.”

The report has been before the River Clyde Homes’ Board and an action plan has been devised by the senior management team that will be monitored to ensure the approved recommendations are implemented.

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