Lynne's view on media stereotyping
Are you frustrated with how the media depicts social housing properties and tenants on their programmes and in their publications?
Lynne Jones is one of our tenants who joined with others across the country to inspire a new guide for people who work in the media. Fair Press for Tenants is part of a wider Benefit to Society initiative. It acknowledges that common misrepresentations of social housing tenants in the local and national media often include inaccurate perceptions such as tenants being associated with exploiting the benefit system and living in run down estates. These misrepresentations are damaging and drive the public to have a typically negative stereotypical view of social housing tenants.
Lynne has blogged about the subject as the guide was launched on Thursday (14 September):
I shouldn’t have been surprised by the universal depth of feeling I experienced at the first workshop about the negativity seen in all aspects of the media in relation to the stereotyping of social housing property and tenants. After all, if I felt the stigma, why would other tenants not feel the same way?
I am retired, after working from the age of 15 until my redundancy shortly before my 60th birthday. I worked hard, brought up three girls, who, along with my grandchildren and great grandchildren, are my proudest achievements. I certainly didn’t always do it right, made some right howlers of mistakes sometimes. However, I love my home, keep it clean and tidy. I look out for my neighbours and give back to my community. I don’t deserve to be stereotyped and stigmatised as a waster, unable or unwilling to fend for myself. I don’t live in squalor and I don’t cheat, steal or lie to get additional benefits. I don’t drink, nor take drugs.
I am a typical social housing tenant, living in decent accommodation in a decent area, amongst like minded, hard-working people, who are proud of who and where they are; just trying to live a decent life.
Not newsworthy? WE might just have a story to tell. Ever thought of asking us?
Bolton at Home shares Lynne’s views that social housing and tenants don’t deserve the negative stereotypes that we all too often see on TV and in the written press. We are among seventeen housing supporting the Benefit to Society initiative. Visit www.benefittosociety.co.uk for more information.