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Coronavirus

 

Coronavirus update - updated 19th July, reviewed 22nd September

 

Looking after our customers

Coastline Housing is committed to ensuring we look after our customers and communities as best as we are able.

 

While the government has removed Coronavirus protection measures, we will be continuing to work in a ‘Covid-secure’ way to keep customers and colleagues as safe as possible, and we will continue to focus on delivering our vital work for communities across Cornwall. You can read our official statement of support to residents here

 

Current government guidance

Whilst the majority of government restrictions are now lifted the government advises everyone to be cautious while managing the risks as cases of Covid-19 remain high.

 

We ask you to respect the wishes of others and to help us to keep everyone safe in maintaining a Covid-secure working environment by: 

  • Wearing a face covering  when attending Coastline office and ideally when meeting any Coastline representative or our contractors, unless you are exempt
  • Maintaining a safe distance from Coastline colleagues or contractors
  • Getting a test if you have symptoms and letting us know if it is positive

For advice on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread to coronavirus, please take a look at this government page.

 

Testing and health advice can be found further down this page or on the NHS page

 

Government Guidance for Landlords and Tenants

The government has published guidance covering areas including rent and arrears, and repairs and maintenance.

 

You can read the full details on the gov.uk website.

 

Coastline is following this guidance with regard to the delivery of our services.

 

NHF statement on evictions and support for residents

The National Housing Federation has written a statement of support for residents, which Coastline Housing confirms it will be following.

 

During the pandemic and beyond, housing associations are committed to:

 

  1. Keeping people secure at home. No one will be evicted from a housing association home as a result of financial hardship, where they are working (or engaging) with their housing association to get their payments back on track.
  2. Helping people to get the support they need. Housing associations are helping residents to access benefits and other support to alleviate financial hardship, including supporting people to get into work where possible.
  3. Acting compassionately and quickly where people are struggling. Housing associations will work with any resident who is struggling to pay rent to make arrangements that are manageable for them in the long term. Legal action will only be taken in serious circumstances – for example as a last resort where a resident will not agree a plan with their landlord to pay their rent, or where it is needed urgently in cases of domestic abuse or of antisocial behaviour that is putting other residents or communities at risk.

You can read the full statement on the NHF website.

 

Coastline Housing service levels

We have produced a plan that shows you which services are available under current restrictions. We are currently delivering a full range of services with Covid precautions in place.

 

Please continue to report repairs and contact us as usual. If your query isn’t urgent use My Coastline or email customer.service@coastlinehousing.co.uk

 

To see the list of services available, click here to read the full plan. 

 

More details can also be read on this page. 

 

Repairs and defects service update

All Emergency and Urgent repairs are being completed within normal time frames.

 

With increased resources in place we are improving the scheduling of less urgent repairs, even with a higher than usual number of reports from customers.

 

An increase in local infection levels or staff having to isolate may impact on our resources.

 

Extra Covid precautions including face coverings remain in place.

 

Some lower priority repairs may take up to 30 working days (six weeks) to complete whilst the service continues to recover.  More complex work usually completed within 60 working days is sometimes being completed close to the end of that time period. In the most complicated cases we may take up to 90 days to complete these works but will be trying hard to avoid any unnecessary delays.

 

Particularly affected are fencing and gates, due to shortages with wood and concrete, and replacement windows, which have changeable delivery dates.

 

We will continue monitor progress, and will update you in coming weeks. 

 

As always, it is important that you report repairs to us straight away and include as much information as you can. If you use My Coastline or email you can attach a photo which helps us to get the repair right first time.  

 

There may be some delays with defects in newer homes due to availability of contractors, but we will record then pass on details of everything that is reported to us. 

 

If a repair gets worse after you have reported it, please let us know as we may then move the appointment to an earlier date.  

 

You can report and book appointment times for non-emergency repairs using our online service My Coastline on this website or download the My Coastline app for Apple, Android and Amazon.

 

Non-emergency repairs can be emailed to customer.service@coastlinehousing.co.uk.  

 

Emergency repairs must be reported by phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 01209 200200. By emergency repairs we mean any defect that puts the health, safety or security of a customer, or a third party, at immediate risk; or that affects the structure of the building adversely. 

 

Everyone at Coastline thanks you for your patience during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

 

Keeping everyone safe if we need to visit your home

Here's a short guide including a video to help keep everyone safe if we need to visit your home. There are things we will do, and some steps we ask you to take.

 

 

Before we visit you will be asked whether anyone in your household has symptoms of coronavirus. The government says no work should be carried out in a household which is isolating because one or more family members has symptoms, unless it is to remedy a direct risk to the safety of the household or the public. For these emergency repairs we will discuss with you how we can undertake them without compromising health and safety. 

 

For households in which one or more people are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable, the government advises any non-emergency work should only be undertaken at the discretion of the individuals concerned. From 1st April 2021 Clinically Extremely Vulnerable people are no longer advised to shield but should continue taking extra precautionary steps to protect themselves and minimise their risk of exposure to the virus. Please be reassured that all our staff are following covid-secure procedures, have full personal protective equipment, and all are briefed with the latest advice. 

 

When we visit, you must allow our staff and contractors space to work, including maintaining a social distance of at least two metres at all times. 

 

Please wait in a different room while work is completed and wear a face covering if you can. We understand that some customers may not be able to wear a face covering, including: 

  • children aged 10 and under (Public Health England does not recommend face coverings for children under the age of 3 for health and safety reasons) 
  • people who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability 
  • where putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress 

None of our staff attending homes fall into any of the higher risk categories covered by government guidelines.   

  

We will provide services and inspections as much as we can by telephone, through My Coastline, and our video link system. 

 

Gas safety checks

Following guidance from the government, gas servicing is classed as critical and will carry on as usual unless anyone in the household is self-isolating due to coronavirus symptoms or at risk. Gas servicing must continue to be done every 12 months, as confirmed by Gas Safe.

 

If our contractor Blue Flame has made an appointment with you, please call them on 01326 378122 should anyone in your household have symptoms of coronavirus. They will either move the appointment or discuss how it may still go ahead.

 

Grounds maintenance

Coastline Services’ maintenance teams are providing a near-usual full service. 

  

They will place signs to encourage social distancing. We ask our customers to respect this and not approach our operatives. 

 

Communal areas

Cleaning of communal areas will focus on hygiene and cleanliness of hard surfaces, handles and touch plates, especially in high risk areas like older persons complexes.  

 

Please do not approach our cleaning team and remember to follow social distancing rules to keep everyone safe, including keeping at least two metres away at all times. 

 

Common rooms in supported housing and older persons complexes are open.

 

Covid secure

We confirm we have completed the government's guidance on managing the risk of Covid-19. View the confirmation here.

 

Rent

As always, please let us know straight away if you are having difficulties paying your rent. Our income management team is here to provide you with advice. This may be different for each customer, so keeping in touch with us as your circumstances change will ensure we can give you the right help. 

 

If you find your income has been reduced, then it is important to make a claim for Universal Credit or Housing Benefit straight away.  

 

To make a claim for Universal Credit visit www.gov.uk/universal-credit. You do not need to call them once you have made a claim. They will contact you if there is anything they need to know, and you can see updates in your online journal. If you or someone you know needs assistance you can contact Citizens Advice to ask about their Help to Claim service. 

 

For Housing Benefit head to www.cornwall.gov.uk/benefits-and-support/housing-benefit/

 

Turn2us has a benefits calculator on its website which gives a good guide to what you may be entitled to: www.turn2us.org.uk/Get-Support

 

Shared Ownership

If you are a Shared Owner and struggling to pay your mortgage due to the situation, you may be able to take a mortgage payment holiday. Please contact your mortgage provider regarding this. If you are struggling to pay your rent share, the team will be happy to assist wherever possible. 

 

Sales of Shared Ownership homes continue, but with increased use of remote/digital processes for viewings and sign-ups. 

 

Energy companies

Energy providers have confirmed no-one will find themselves without electricity.

 

Providers can use a discretionary fund to provide you with credit or send pre-loaded top up cards, so your supply isn’t affected. More broadly, any energy customer in financial distress will also be supported by their supplier, which could include debt repayments and bill payments being reassessed, reduced or paused where necessary, while disconnection of credit meters will be completely suspended.

 

Please contact your energy supplier to see what options are available to you if needed.

 

Further help

If you and your family are experiencing extreme hardship please contact us as we can help you find extra support. You can also access help from Cornwall Council’s Crisis and Care service. Visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/advice-and-benefits/benefits/crisis-and-care-awards/ 

 

We will add details of other organisations that can help on our customer wellbeing page.

 

Mutual exchanges

Applications for mutual exchanges are being accepted. 

 

We will increasingly use remote/digital sign-up methods as part of the process of exchanging your tenancy. The Tenancy team will guide you through how these work.  

 

Moving to a Coastline home

We are letting homes through Cornwall HomeChoice and HomeHunt.

 

Please join and check the sites each week to see if a suitable home is available.

 

We will increasingly use remote/digital sign-up methods as part of the process for moving to your home. The Lettings team will guide you through how these work. 

 

See more on our rent a home pages.

 

Support calls

We contact customers where we know about any health issues that may make them more vulnerable. If you think you would benefit from a telephone call each day during the pandemic please let us know.  

 

Coastline House

Our reception at Coastline House is open to visitors, but we ask customers to continue contacting us mainly through the My Coastline app, by email at customer.service@coastlinehousing.co.uk, or by phone. 

 

Miners Court

Visits are possible by people to a resident’s home. Social distancing must be observed and all visitors should first report to reception on arrival.

 

PPE is available to all staff and visitors.

 

The dining room and communal lounge are open as normal. The day centre service is preparing to reopen, taking into account the continuation of working in Covid Secure practices.

 

Homeless Service

Covid precautions in place at Chi Winder continue. Full service for clients although group activities will be restricted to eight per session to allow for the continuation of Covid Secure practices.

 

Kitchen fully open. Severe Weather Emergency Protocol beds available.

 

NHS Covid-19 app

The official NHS COVID-19 contact tracing app for England and Wales lets you know when you're at risk from coronavirus.

 

It alerts you if you have spent time near someone who tests positive for coronavirus, and allows you to check into locations by scanning NHS QR codes on display.

 

All our main buildings have NHS QR codes at entrances, including Coastline House, Miners Court, Chi Winder, Veor House, Trelawny Court, Hens Horn Court and Scotts House.

 

You can download the app through this page.

 

Government health advice

The government says Coronavirus remains a serious health risk, and it’s important to stay cautious and help protect yourself and others. In England: 

  • Meet up outside or if you’re indoors open windows or doors if you have visitors. 
  • If you think you might have COVID-19 symptoms, take a PCR test and stay home. 
  • Wear face coverings in crowded places to help protect others. 
  • Check in with the NHS COVID-19 app when you’re out. 
  • Wash your hands regularly and for at least 20 seconds with soap. 
  • Get vaccinated if you are 18 or over. 

The main symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are: 

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature) 
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual) 
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal 

If you have any of the main symptoms of COVID-19, even if they're mild: 

  • Get a PCR test (test that is sent to a lab) to check if you have COVID-19 as soon as possible. 
  • You and anyone you live with should stay at home and not have visitors until you get your test result – only leave your home to have a test. 

You can check your symptoms and arrange for a test on this NHS page.

 

Anyone in England who does not have symptoms can now get regular rapid lateral flow tests to check for coronavirus. About one in three people with coronavirus do not have symptoms but can still infect others. You can find out how to get packs of tests on this NHS page.

 

Updates and more information can be found here:
NHS: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19
GOV.UK: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

 

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