The COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak has seen housing services across the country respond to the biggest health crisis that the UK has faced this century. The pandemic posed dual challenges for housing: more residents needed our services, and service delivery had new limits due to lockdown and social distancing.
We’re sorry if this has impacted on you and for anyone that has experienced difficulties or disruption with regard to repairs being undertaken and delays on occasion getting through to our Customer Service Centre.
Thank you for your patience during these challenging times.
Change and challenges
Our first priority is always to keep you safe. For a significant period of time at the start of the lockdown from March 2020 onwards, we had to significantly reduce the repairs services we could offer, limiting this to only the most urgent repairs. We’ve adapted our services to fit with the changing lockdown rules and social distancing guidelines.
Since 1 August 2020, the housing repairs service has also undergone significant change as we have entered into long-term repairs contractors with new contractors. The outstanding repairs from when services were severely limited, the handover to new contractors, and the seasonal uplift in demand that is common at this time of year has resulted in some disruption to the service. The council as a whole also had a few problems with our telephony system.
We’re sorry about this and we’ve worked to improve it.
During the current lockdown we are one of the few housing providers who have not reverted to an emergency only repair service.
With the new variants and spread of the virus both we and our contractors have seen more staff having to self-isolate either due to having tested positive for the virus or being in close contact with someone who has tested positive. To keep you safe and to slow down the spread of the virus and to protect our NHS we are ensuring that the strict government guidelines around self-isolating are enforced both at Hammersmith and Fulham and by our contractors but this has inevitably impacted on all our services delivered.
What can you do to help
Please let us know if you are self-isolating due to Covid -19 when you ring our Customer Service Centre to raise a repair. Until the period of self-isolation is over we will not be able to do any non–emergency repairs in your home.
When our operative attends please maintain safe distancing (2 metres), ventilate the area where the operative needs to work and ideally stay in a separate room while the works are done.
Please try to be understanding if we do have to cancel an appointment at short notice or don’t get back to you as soon as we normally would. One operative having to self-isolate, could equate to 30 appointments in a week that we lose. We will do our best to rearrange appointments and resolve your issue as soon as we can.
We’d like to continue to encourage as many residents as possible to raise repairs online using our online housing repairs form. This will help to reduce the volume of calls being received and play a part in reducing waiting times for those residents who really need to get in touch on the phone.
Thank you for your patience and support while continuing to work with us during these very different and challenging times.