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The consumer in public servicesChoice, values and difference$
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Richard Simmons, Martin Powell, and Ian Greener

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781847421814

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847421814.001.0001

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The consumer and social housing

The consumer and social housing

(p.137) Eight The consumer and social housing
The consumer in public services

Nick Mills

Policy Press

Many of the reforms of the past 30 years have aimed to provide more reflexive landlords and providers. However, the recent emphasis on choice has led to some tension between the ‘residual’ role of social housing, as a tenure for those who cannot support themselves in the housing market, and a desire to expand choice to users of housing services. This chapter examines the role ascribed to social housing tenants and considers the various roles ascribed in policy. It defines three labels: clients, citizens, and consumers. The chapter develops these labels to consider what they mean in relation to social housing. It examines the appearance of consumers in post-war housing policy and the mechanisms of consumerism applied to housing.

Keywords:   social housing, post-war housing, consumerism mechanics, housing services

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