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Our Good Relations Strategy

Updated: 24 Oct 2016
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Housing need sets the context for housing policy
Jennifer Hawthorne speaking at a Shared Neighbourhood event
Over the years we have made a substantial contribution to community relations through our policies and initiatives. Examples include our local presence in communities, and our long-standing relationship with community groups through the Housing Community Network.
We have also been to the forefront in dealing with community conflict responding to intimidation and property damage, and implementing the SPED (Special Purchase of Evacuated Dwellings) and the POPPI (Protection of Private Properties at Interfaces) schemes.
More recently we have worked with local groups to clean up estates and remove the manifestations of division. We are also working with the Common Ground Consortium, Habitat for Humanity and the Mediation Service.  We have a wealth of experience at local level and the Community Cohesion Unit will develop and use this experience.

Our aims

We have a statutory duty in terms of Section75 (2) of the Northern Ireland Act 1998. In this context we have a key role in promoting community relations and community cohesion.
As our strategic objective to promote good relations we will:
  • Respond quickly and effectively to the needs of people in danger as a result of community conflict
  • Work in partnership with others to address the complex housing needs of a divided society
  • Respect the rights of people who choose to live where they wish
  • Facilitate and encourage mixed housing as far as this is practicable, desirable and safe

Our principles

Our commitment to good relations is based on the following values and principles:
  • Housing need continues to set the context for housing policy
  • We understand the impact poor community relations have on the delivery of housing services
  • We believe no housing policies or programmes should endanger the lives of tenants, staff, communities or property
  • We will support individual housing choice
  • Partnership working will underpin the analysis of the problems and the responses designed to enhance community cohesion