Housing Association (Rights and Representation) Bill

This bill is going through its second reading in the House of Commons today. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200607/cmbills/035/2007035.pdf
‘m in a shared ownership property, which means that the biggest financial commitment I have ever made is with an organisation that I find curious and baffling and to which I am intimately bound. The mysterious place they call ‘Head Office’ in which decisions about my domestic circumstances are made is completely unknown to me and yet every inch of my carpet is known to them. They are certainly autocratic and whimsical, often quiet and obscure, and may be relatively benevolent, but after four years of sharing a flat our hearts are still strangers to one another.

This bill appears to rebalance the situation towards the tenant. My reading of the bill is that it would require housing associations to produce a service agreement which would be approved by either the Housing Corporation or a tenants’ jury. An inspection of the housing association and whether or not it is living up to its service promise can be requested by the tenants association. If the housing association continually fails to deliver on its service, the Housing Corporation may ballot the tenants on whether the management should be transferred to another housing association.

I have encouraged the residents in my block to write to our MP to recommend she support this bill, but it belatedly occurred to me that I have no idea whether this would be a good thing or not. How can I find out? And how can I find a website that decodes parliamentary bills into plain English?

If you are also a tenant of a housing association these links might be useful:

The website of the housing association regulator:

If you want to contact your MP about the bill you can look them up on http://www.theyworkforyou.com/


Why is this here?

When I was a little girl my grandfather and I used to spend some time contemplating the questions that haunt young children and old people – such as what would happen to all the new dead people when the sky reached capacity, and whether that cast the idea of heaven into doubt, and whether porridge was nice or nasty. We couldn’t really afford to spend too much time on all that stuff , because there were always rocks to climb, willow twigs to turn into whistles and potatoes to get from market for my granny. So after some contemplation my grandfather would take refuge in the incontradictable ‘Näin on marjat’ – that’s the way the berries are. And on we would go, hunting trolls, dreaming about having a boat, and wondering whether an open topped sausage sandwich was available from granny. These days I find things are more complicated, or there is more apparent need to have an opinion. So this blogspot is for the things that I have contemplated and can’t answer. If anyone can tell me how the berries really are, I would be very grateful.