“I don’t want to be ungrateful but it’s like, when you trash your flat they fix it, make it nicer than before. But if you keep your head down and look after it, then you get nothing.”
We were told that by being given substandard housing people were left feeling worthless and insignificant.
Having a decent standard of accommodation, particularly when you have been through a tough time, is so important. Many people felt devalued and disrespected by the standard of their accommodation. Often those who looked after their accommodation felt ignored in comparison to people who disrespected and damaged their property. People also shared that they felt they couldn’t really question the suitability or standard of accommodation because they should just be grateful for what they were given.
Mayday recommends introducing a minimum standard for the quality of accommodation – WILT. The general principle we adopt is asking the question ‘Would I Live There?’
In addition, staff could be trained on the principles of PIE (Psychologically Informed Environments) so they understand the importance of the environment and what can make a positive difference for people. People could also be given the opportunity to apply for a personal budget to personalise their room.