Archive | September, 2019

Council Housing Event

27 Sep

Council Housing 1Council Housing 2

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Zest Couch to 5k Course

26 Sep

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Private Sector Housing Strategy Feedback and Consultation

24 Sep

Phase 1 Consultation

Thank you for taking the time to respond to the Private Sector Housing Strategy Survey which took place in June and July 2019. A total of 217 households responded, 125 home owners and 92 private renters. Below is some feedback from the consultation and our response.

You told us:

  • You want more housing advice and information on our website and for us to promote it through social media.
  • You would find it helpful if we provided the following advice and support:
  • Help to make your home more energy efficient, sustainable and low carbon through better insulation, renewal energies and upgrading heating systems
  • A handy person scheme to carry out small repairs and home and garden maintenance
  • Home security advice
  • Help to find more affordable accommodation especially in the private rented sector
  • More landlord regulation and greater tenancy security for private rented tenants

Following feedback from this consultation the challenges identified in the Strategy are:

  • Challenge 1 – Limited awareness of the support available to home owners and private renters
  • Challenge 2 – Poor condition of private sector housing
  • Challenge 3 – Climate change
  • Challenge 4 – Managing the private rented sector
  • Challenge 5 – People living in unsuitable homes which is affecting their health
  • Challenge 6 – Increasing numbers of long term empty homes
  • Challenge 7 – Rising house prices and private rents
  • Challenge 8 – Sustainable neighbourhoods

Priorities

To address these challenges and support private residents in their homes we have identified four priorities for the Strategy. These have been revised following feedback in the first phase of consultation.

 

  Proposed priorities in the consultation Proposed revised priorities
1 Provide the right housing advice and support to home owners and  private rented tenants Provide the right housing advice and support to home owners, private rented tenants and landlords
2 Improve the condition of private sector housing Improve the condition, safety and energy efficiency of private sector housing
3 Support vulnerable people to live healthy and independent lives in their home Support people to live healthy independent lives in their home
4 Make the best use of existing homes in the city Improve access to affordable housing in the private sector to sustain neighbourhoods

The full draft Strategy is available to download below

Your browser does not support inline PDF viewing.Please download the PDF.

Please take the time to read this document and give your views. This feedback will be considered when developing the final Private Sector Housing Strategy and will help to make sure that our proposed plans meet the needs of home owners and private rented tenants living in Sheffield.

Give Us Your Views

Draft Private Sector Housing Assistance Policy

24 Sep

The draft Private Sector Housing Assistance Policy will set out the types of assistance available to private occupants, home owners and private rented tenants, to improve their living conditions and enable independent living.

The main focus of the assistance will be for low income households that do not have the means to make home improvements themselves and disabled people that need assistance to live independently in their home through the provision of adaptations, equipment or assistive technology.

In this consultation we want to know your views on our definition of a ‘low income’ household and the proposed assistance to include in the policy. The attached summary table is a brief description of each product and full details can be found in the Assistance Policy.

Proposed low income household definition

A low household is defined as having a gross income of no more than:

•             £19,200 for single person

•             £21,600 for a couple with no children.

•             £25,200 for a single person or couple with dependent children.

•             Have savings of no more than £6,000

And/or may be in receipt of at least one of the principal means-tested and/or disability related benefits. The income related benefits include those stipulated by the Department of Working Pensions as at April 2019, which are:

•             Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance

•             Income-related Employment and Support Allowance

•             Income Support

•             Pension Credit

•             Tax Credits (Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit)

•             Housing Benefit

•             Council Tax Support

•             Social Fund (Sure Start Maternity Grant, Funeral Payment, Cold  Weather                               Payment)

•             Universal Credit

Give Us Your Views

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Free Community Health Course

17 Sep

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Consultation on plans to vary street lighting levels opens

17 Sep

Sheffield residents are being asked to give their views on a proposal to vary the street lighting levels across Sheffield, following the start of a trial in three areas of the city.

The proposals, which support the recently launched Climate Emergency plans, encourage approaches in support of a lower carbon economy, greater resilience to climate change and cleaner growth.

From Monday 19 August until Friday 13 September, street lighting levels in Crosspool, Endcliffe and Meersbrook will be reduced on a trial basis.

During this period, street lights will switch on responsively at 80% instead of the current 84% before midnight and reduce from 54% to 40% at midnight until 6am.

Lighting levels will be adjusted when footfall and traffic is at its lowest and the council will continue to work with South Yorkshire Police, and other stakeholders, to assess and evaluate any impact on communities.

If implemented city-wide, as well as achieving a 380 tonne annual reduction in Co2 emissions, the changes will also see a number of other environmental benefits including minimising the negative effects on residents’ sleep patterns, certain nocturnal animals, plant species and people’s enjoyment of the night sky.

Importantly, the lighting levels will remain in line with the current standards, providing adequate levels of lighting on the highway.

The consultation will close on Sunday 22 September when the views of those in the pilot areas will be assessed alongside the views from respondents across the city.

The city-wide consultation can be found here.

More information about the proposal, including a link to a briefing report and associated maps of the trial areas, can be found at: www.sheffield.gov.uk/streetlights

Lindsey talks about the dangers of drinking during pregnancy

17 Sep

As part of International Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) awareness day, Sheffield City Council is highlighting the effects of drinking alcohol whilst pregnant.

Lindsey, grandmother to Nathaniel who was born with FASD, spoke to us about the effects of mothers drinking alcohol whilst pregnant.

Lindsey said: “I started to notice Nathaniel acting differently by the time he went to school, he would be withdrawn, he would have extreme emotional reactions to situations, he would lose control of what he was doing, and in some instances he reverted back to being incontinent.

“Nathaniel is a beautiful, warm-hearted young boy who struggled to express his emotions. Due to fear and unease, incontinence was a way for Nathaniel to express his distress; I would have to leave work and pick him up, which resulted in him feeling much safer.

“The school were fantastic with him; he was referred to CAMHS where we went through a long process of elimination trying to determine Nathaniel’s diagnosis. I had always had a feeling it wasn’t ADHD and he wasn’t on the Autistic spectrum, but we had to make sure we covered all areas.

“By chance, someone who had worked alongside Nathaniel had suggested I read about FASD. I spent the evening researching and immediately knew this was what had affected Nathaniel. This was extremely distressing as I came to the realisation that my lovely grandson had been born with a brain injury, one that required a lifetime adjustment.”

FASD is not always identifiable in babies as they don’t always show physical markers, this can result in misdiagnosis.

In Nathaniel’s case, there were physical markers but this was not picked up by healthcare professionals at the time as FASD was not so widely known.

Lindsey added: “Nathaniel was born with a suspected heart murmur; there was a difference in his facial features which I am now able to recognise. During my daughter’s pregnancy, she never confessed to drinking as much as she did, she was presentable and she always attended her appointments sober.

“Life now can be extremely difficult for Nathaniel, he has to have routine, he has short-term memory loss and he has very little empathy. I make sure I am patient with him, that he has support and that I also have a lot of support, I am very lucky to have the support that I do have. My family are brilliant and so is the school that Nathaniel attends.

“It is hard when people assume he is misbehaving, he is not doing this intentionally and his incorrect choices are not done wilfully; he doesn’t have the ability to make correct choices all the time. This is the sad part of FASD, while he does listen to me, he is just unable to access certain parts of his brain that other people can do so easily.

“My message to expectant mothers is this – FASD is totally preventable if people don’t drink. You don’t have to be an alcoholic, you don’t have to binge drink, one drink whilst cooking your meal at home can have a lifetime effect on your baby.

“If you drink when you’re pregnant, your baby is drinking too.”

Councillor Jackie Drayton, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families and Baby Safe Champion at Sheffield City Council, said:

“We know that drinking alcohol whilst pregnant can have a major impact on the health of your baby, and Lindsey and Nathaniel’s powerful story helps us all to understand the real impact this has had on their lives.

“As a baby safe champion for Sheffield, my message to all expectant mums is please don’t drink whilst you’re pregnant. Keep you and your baby healthy to give you both the best possible start in your new lives together.”

There is no safe level of alcohol consumption during pregnancy. If you or anyone you know needs help or support about this issue, call Sheffield Treatment and Recovery Team (START) on 0114 305 0500 for free, confidential support.

For more information on how to keep you baby safe, please visit www.sheffield.gov.uk/babysafe