Building safety information

Building safety residents engagement strategy

Following the tragedy of the Grenfell Tower fire in 2017, new legislation has been introduced to ensure the safety of residents living in high-rise buildings. Our building safety resident engagement strategy outlines how we work with our residents and the high-rise buildings they live in to communicate about how and what we do to keep their building safe.


The Building Safety Act 2022 makes the rules clearer around building safety and outlines clearer responsibilities for building owners and managers, such as C&C as part of Aster Group, to improve the oversight and enforcement of safety regulations.

It introduces new regulations and standards to address fire safety, structural integrity, and the overall safety of buildings. We understand that building safety is a top concern for residents, and we want to assure
residents that their safety is our utmost priority. Within each of our high rise buildings, we have a range of ongoing safety measures and practices in place. This includes regular fire safety inspections, and strict compliance with relevant safety regulations.


Aims of our Resident Engagement Strategy


We are committed to involving residents in and keeping them well-informed about the decisions we make and measures we are taking to ensure the safety of our high-rise buildings. This approach has been developed using feedback from residents who live in applicable buildings, and the key aims are:

  • Explain how we will keep residents informed of safety-related activities and how they can influence decisions that are made.
  • Empower residents to hold us to account on how their building is managed.
  • Set out resident responsibilities with regards to keeping the building safe.
  • Explain how residents can report safety related concerns and complaints to us.
  • Ensure information related to safety at their building is easily available and can be understood by them.

Residents’ Requirements


We have based our strategy on information that residents have told us about, including language preferences, disabilities, hearing impairments and visual impairments. We have used this information to:

  • Establish methods for us to communicate with residents and for them to
    communicate with us effectively.
  • Understand resident preferences related to building safety information and how we share it.

We will work with all residents in our high-rise buildings to understand their own individual fire safety risks and, where appropriate, develop a personal emergency evacuation plan.


How we will communicate building safety-related information to residents

We will tailor our communication to residents as much as possible with regards to any specific requirements they may have. The methods we will use will include, but not be limited to:

  • Via a printed Building Safety Record (see below).
  • During scheme meetings.
  • On electronic noticeboards.
  • Building Safety Newsletter.
  • On the C&C website and on each building’s webpage (right).

We will offer a translated version on request. Translations of all information on our website will be available in community languages automatically by clicking the orange ‘Recite Me’ button in the corner of this page.


Information we will provide to residents


We undertake a range of activities to ensure our buildings remain safe. We will share information about those measures via a Building Safety Record that will be delivered to residents’ homes and renewed every 12 months. This will include information about how each building is kept safe, how residents can report building safety related issues to us, and how further information can be requested.


When we are planning major works to resident homes or the building, we will consult residents in advance to make sure that they understand what we are planning and why. We will arrange a residents’ meeting so that residents can ask any questions and find out more. Where the works are likely to cause disruption we will minimise that as far as possible and let residents know exactly how works might affect them.


How we’ll measure the effectiveness of this strategy

We will monitor how effective this strategy is through a variety of metrics that will include:

  • The number of residents that interact with our safety-related activities.
  • How safe residents feel living here.
  • The number of building safety-related complaints reported and resolved/unresolved.
  • The number of safety-related issues reported and resolved/unresolved.

We will review our approach if either we or residents within a scheme do not feel that it is effective.


When the strategy will be reviewed

  • On a defined frequency set by The Building Safety Regulator (currently every 2 years).
  • When major works to the building have been completed.
  • When a significant incident occurs.

Reporting Fire Safety Concerns

We will act on any safety-related reports that are made to us as a priority. Residents have told us that they would like to report these concerns to their Service Officer or via our contact centre.

Residents can get in touch with us via our contact centre:


How to make a building safety-related complaint

We will ensure that residents are empowered to play an effective role in ensuring the ongoing safety of their building, which includes identifying and reporting hazards that could impact their safety. We encourage residents to make a complaint if they feel that there are safety-related concerns that are not being addressed. Scenarios could include but are not limited to:

  • Reported safety-related concerns not being rectified.
  • Not being informed or consulted on safety-related works.
  • Unsafe practices within the building.

Complaints will be dealt with in line with our Complaints Policy and will be formally acknowledged within five working days and investigated within 10 working days. Complainants will receive a written response with the outcome.


How further safety-related information can be requested


In addition to the information provided above, we hold many more safety records and compliance documents that are related to the safety of our buildings. Residents or their authorised representatives can request access to any of these additional documents, or in writing, by contacting C&C on 020 7922 5300 or contact-us@ccht.org.uk. Information can be
provided in the post or via email and in accessible format requests such as large text. We will aim to:

  • Acknowledge request within 48 hours.
  • Provide the information requested within one calendar month of the request.


There may be certain information we can't share, but we'll explain the reasons why.


How residents can get involved in building safety management


As well as communicating building safety-related information to residents, we will seek feedback on how residents would like the building to be managed from a safety perspective.

This will include:

  • How we communicate with residents around building safety, including the frequency.
  • Asking you how safe residents feel living in their building and the reasons why they feel safe or unsafe.
  • Consulting with residents when major works or changes are planned in their building.
  • When this strategy is being reviewed and how residents can be involved.

Consultation


We will allow adequate time for residents to respond when we do consult with them. When the Resident Engagement Strategy is being reviewed, we will consult with residents for at least 3 weeks, invite feedback during the review, and communicate our response to that feedback.


Whilst we will consult with residents where major works are required, we will not for routine repairs. Where access is needed to residents’ homes we will engage with residents and book convenient appointments to rectify identified issues. Where emergency repairs are required, for example to fire doors or alarm systems, we will respond to these within our applicable emergency timescales.


We will endeavour to capture as much feedback as possible when there are decisions to be made around how buildings are managed. These opportunities will be promoted using the communication methods above, and we will use accessible methods including text message, e-mail and paper surveys to capture feedback.


We would also like to invite residents to express their interest in a Building Safety Resident Group that will involve Aster colleagues and residents. This group will oversee and seek assurances on how high-rise buildings are managed from a safety perspective. You can find out more about this group and how you can join by contacting us on 020 7922 5300 or
contact-us@ccht.org.uk.


Resident responsibilities to help to ensure building safety


We will regularly communicate with residents to make you aware of how they can contribute to the safety of their building. General considerations however are:

  • Taking care in residents’ own home and keeping escape routes clear.
  • Checking that domestic smoke detectors work at least every month.
  • Allow our staff access to carry out safety related checks.
  • Dispose of refuse and items appropriately, and keep communal areas clear.
  • Report any safety related issues as soon as possible.
  • Do not tamper with any safety related equipment.
  • Ensure fire doors are kept shut.
  • Do not use barbeques on balconies.
  • If residents do smoke, ensure that all paraphernalia are extinguished and disposed of appropriately.


If any unsafe activities that could compromise safety are identified, we will take appropriate and proportionate action to mitigate that risk.

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