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Social Housing Employees – You Don’t Have To Put Up With Intimidation!

Published: 18 September 2016, in categories: Landlord and Tenant Updates | Legal Updates | News and Updates

Those who work in the social housing field know that dealing with angry tenants is all part of the job. However, they are entitled to go about their lives free from fear and one case showed that the courts will come down hard on those who intimidate them.

An assistant neighbourhood officer employed by a housing association had been approached by a tenant on the way to pick up her children from school and was threatened with violence in very unpleasant terms. The association swiftly obtained a court injunction against the tenant. Amongst other things, she was forbidden from contacting, approaching or harassing the officer concerned.

She was also ordered not to go within 100 metres of the association’s offices. The day after she was served with the injunction, however, she was seen on CCTV going to the offices and speaking to a security officer at the reception desk. In the circumstances, the association launched County Court proceedings to have her committed to prison for contempt.

The Court noted the rapidity with which the tenant had breached the order. However, she explained that she had gone to the offices to complain about her central heating. There had been no offensive language or violence used during the brief visit. In the circumstances, the Court imposed a seven-day prison sentence but suspended the term on condition that the tenant complied with the order in future.

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