Work for Hackney Homes… pay, uhm, zero

Rhodes (Hackney council-built )housing estate Dalston London E8 (dalston Ln @ left) July 2013 ©

THE TROUBLED Hackney Homes has had the bright idea of hiring people to work for nothing.

Not satisfied with your funding the organisation through council tax, the quango is now seeking volunteer “resident inspectors and mystery shoppers”.

They will help Hackney Homes (HH) to “test the quality of the services it provides”.

If there is no money in it, what is there for volunteers? HH said on line: “The roles will involve making enquiries to departments across the organisation by phone, email, text or in person to identify what works well and areas for improvement.”

For the brave among you, HH adds:  “Volunteers may have the chance to speak with other residents and visit estates in order to monitor performance.”

The “chosen residents” would get an understanding of housing management and “benefit from learning new skills, which could help with future career development”.

What kind of career development was not specified. Certainly, repainting of the many vehicles expensively branded “Hackney Homes” will be needed at some time. Unless the fleet is simply disposed of by auction.

Housing councillor Philip Glanville described the mystery-shopper job as “an exciting opportunity”.

Despite styling itself the “housing provider”, Hackney Homes is likely to be disbanded next spring 2016 and its role returned to the council.

The Labour regime also took education back in house, a decade after it was privatised by the Blair government.

David Altheer 190115

* For more information, contact resident participation team and 020 8356 784

* Main pic: the Rhodes Estate at E8 3TJ, social housing in Dalston 

* Backstory: Hackney evictions rise, say Greens and Hackney enlists private squatters

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

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