Mrs C complains the Council has provided unsuitable temporary accommodation and is inappropriately restricting the types of property she can bid for.
Mrs C - the complainant
Miss D - a young adult, one of Mrs C's children
Mrs C is living in temporary accommodation where she cannot access proper washing facilities, usually has to sleep on the sofa and does not have sufficient storage for her mobility equipment.
The Ombudsman upheld the complaint and found fault causing injustice.
To remedy the injustice caused, the council has agreed to:
- offer to review the suitability of Mrs C’s temporary accommodation. If Mrs C confirms she wants this review, the Council should invite her to list the reasons she considers the accommodation unsuitable. The Council should then complete the review as soon as possible in accordance with the relevant law and guidance and write to Mrs C with its decision. If the Council concludes the accommodation is unsuitable it should offer suitable accommodation without delay. If it decides the accommodation is suitable, it should explain that Mrs C has a right of appeal to the county court on a point of law. The Council has recently completed this recommendation;
- make fresh decisions, without fault, about whether to include Miss D on Mrs C’s housing application and if so, whether the household is eligible for three bedrooms. The fresh decision(s) should be issued in writing and explain Mrs C’s review rights;
- apologise to Mrs C for the injustice caused by its faults;
- pay Mrs C £500 to recognise the lost opportunity, frustration, uncertainty and justified anger caused by its faults;
- review the wording of its allocations scheme as necessary, including the definition of a ‘child’; and
- review its procedures to minimise the risk of the identified faults recurring.