In the first episode of the Housing Ombudsman's new podcast, Richard Blakeway, Verity Richards and David Simmons discuss the complaints they have seen that have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
As the Covid-19 restrictions change this week, the podcast reflects on the complaints the Ombudsman has seen that have been affected by the pandemic, focused on the three areas of repairs, delays and communication. It gives insight on successful approaches by landlords as well as cases for learning, and provides some key messages for landlords to:
- be clear about strategies to manage repairs, and communicate them clearly
- exercise discretion appropriately
- continue to be fair in dealing with the backlog of repairs and how complaints are managed.
Future podcast topics will feature discussions about the Ombudsman’s damp and mould report, its remedies and will also look at individual cases.
About the speakers
Richard Blakeway, Housing Ombudsman
Richard was appointed as Housing Ombudsman from 1 September 2019. He has extensive experience in the housing sector, with previous roles including Deputy Mayor of London for Housing, chair of the Homes for London board and non-executive director of Homes England.
Verity Richards, Head of Dispute Support
Verity Richards joined the Housing Ombudsman as the Head of Dispute Support in March 2021 after spending over 12 years working at a large, national housing association in which she was responsible for the complaints and stakeholder enquiries service.
David Simmons, Sector Development Lead
Dave has worked for the Housing Ombudsman for more than 15 years. For the first 12 years of his tenure with the Ombudsman, he was an Adjudicator. In August 2019 he became Sector Development Lead.