Coronavirus update - Friday 13 November

We’re now two weeks into the second lockdown.

The lockdown guidance gives more details about what you can and can’t do, should you need a reminder.

Services update

Our main aim during this period is to minimise the contact needed between our staff and our residents so we continue to keep people safe, whilst providing services in line with Government guidance.

The following temporary changes to our services are currently in place:

Repairs

  • We have reverted to emergency repairs in your homes but will continue to do external repairs wherever possible.
  • You will still be able to request a future repair.
  • Any new routine repairs inside your homes will be arranged in advance for after lockdown.
  • If you already have a routine repair booked to take place in your home during the four-week lockdown, we will call you if we need to rearrange it.

Safety checks

  • Safety checks in residents’ homes and buildings, for example, gas safety, will continue.

Work on our estates

  • Flytipping removal and clearance is continuing.
  • Outdoor environmental services is continuing.
  • Stairwell cleaning is continuing.
  • Laundries are open with social distancing in place. 
  • Playgrounds are open.

New lettings and sales

  • Home allocations (including mutual exchanges) and sales are continuing and should be carried out virtually.
  • Only when firm offers are made/final viewings are needed will people be asked to visit properties.

Regeneration and construction sites

Community engagement and resident involvement

  • All face-to-face community activities, groups and consultations, indoor and outdoor, have stopped and are being replaced by on-line activities.

Sheltered housing

  • Services have been reduced to minimise visits and contact by staff.
  • Essential and statutory building safety checks in schemes are continuing.
  • Face coverings must be worn by any visitors to a scheme.
  • Housing with Support welfare and support checks are over the phone or virtual. Officers will only visit sites in emergencies.
  • Communal lounges and guest rooms in sheltered housing schemes are closed.
  • Regular enhanced cleaning of sheltered schemes is continuing.

Housing officer visits

  • Essential visits only – contact to be over the phone or virtual wherever possible.

Closed or reduced services

  • Community rooms and communal lounges remain closed.
  • Our offices and city centre shop remain closed to the public.
  • The Beacon Community Hub remains closed to the public. Commercial tenants will continue to use it and any other activities have stopped unless exempt from the lockdown.

We’re still here to help - ways to contact us

You can reach us in any of the following ways:  

  • The easiest way to manage your tenancy from a distance is by using MyPCH – our on-line customer service portal that let’s you check and pay your rent, report a repair and any other issues and update your details.
  • Webchat is live every week day on our website from 10am until 4pm.
  • You can fill out a contact form.
  • You can call us on 0808 230 6500.
  • Or to simply stay up to date with service announcements and other PCH news, you can follow us on FacebookTwitter or LinkedIn.

Rent and payment changes

We’re committed to making sure that we can help you so it’s important to contact us as soon as possible if you have any money worries. We’d like to reassure our residents that we will not evict anyone due to a loss of income as a result of Coronavirus. Call us on 0808 230 6500. 

Credit Unions encourage members to save regularly, provide loans at low interest rates and help members in need of financial advice and assistance. They are an excellent alternative to unscrupulous loan sharks.

Find out more about the City of Plymouth Credit Union.

Alterations

With more people at home again, now might seem like a good time to do alterations to your house or flat. We’d like to remind tenants that you need to get written permission before any renovations are carried out. You can write to us at: Repairs, Plymouth Community Homes, Plumer House, Tailyour Road, Plymouth, PL6 5DH.

Supporting local businesses

It’s been a tough year for independent traders and we’re keen to support local business owners who may be struggling at the moment. In fact, we have a number of commercial premises throughout the city.

If you can, and if they are open at the moment, please do try and support local retailers. Geddon Plymouth!

Looking for an Apprenticeship?

Skills Launchpad Plymouth is a one-stop shop for people of all ages looking for work and training in and around the city. It’s just published its Apprenticeship Bulletin which is packed with opportunities in all sectors.

Childcare Places and Free School Meals

If your child is aged between three and four years old you are entitled to 15 hours of free childcare a week with an Ofsted registered provider.

Families earning less than £16,190, with a two year old, could get up to 15 hours of free childcare per week.

If your children normally access childcare it’s really important they continue to attend so that they can gain the learning and wellbeing benefits of early education.

Find out more www.plymouth.gov.uk/childcarefamilyinformation.

Food Plymouth

We have been working with Food Plymouth. They have put together an online resource to help people who need to access emergency food. This could be through lack of funds or not being able to get out to the shops. Find out more here.

Other places to turn to for help

We’re working with police teams on reports of anti-social behaviour which you can report to us on 0808 230 6500 or 0800 028 7377 (out of hours). 

If things are getting too much, don’t suffer in silence. You can contact the National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 200 0247 or the Plymouth Domestic Abuse Service on 0800 458 2558. There’s also information here.

Thank you for your continued support and patience, and stay safe.