A regulatory body established for hostels and supported housing

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Hostels and supported housing in the UK isn't currently regulated, so for every good landlord/housing charity there is a bad one.

Owners of hostels and supported housing use licence agreements rather than tenancy agreements, these give vulnerable adults less rights and treated as second class citizens. Support workers can take advantage of vulnerable adults, bullying and belittling of clients is common. No training standards. Often contravening Equality Act laws and Data Protection laws.

People who end up living in hostels and supported housing often suffer from substance misuse issues and are usually self medicating to alleviate trauma symptoms. Most have a background of traumatic events, such as child abuse, domestic violence, seen horrific things during military combat or been sexually assaulted. I've never met anyone who misuses substances for the fun of it, everyone I have met has had some traumatic event that has affected their lives. So clients are already going through difficulties, we should therefore try to make things easier and fairer for them.

There needs to be a regulatory body that oversees training of support workers, a fair and impartial complaints procedure in place and fair licence agreement.

I have been discriminated against by two housing charities. The first housing charity evicted me for not engaging enough, even though I have an anxiety disorder. The second housing charity dealt with a complaint unfairly and the complaints procedure was not impartial. The manager didn't give a client a warning for false accusations of racism and homophobia, when I complained the head office ignored the fact there was a witness and sided with the manager. 

In both cases there was no-one that I could complain to because they aren't regulated and the local authority (Lewisham Council) don't monitor them. Often there is an assumption that the Care Quality Commission regulate hostels and supported housing, but they don't come under their remit. The Charity Commission do not regulate hostels or supported housing and don't get involved in the day to day running of charities.



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