More discussions are needed to tackle racism in the housing sector, which is why Inside the accommodation has established an editorial board on running and housing and is launching a series of surveys on racism and housing. Martin hilditch Explain
The first survey in our series on racism and housing examines how ethnic minorities are more likely to experience fuel poverty.
A year ago, following the murder of George Floyd in the United States, organizations in the housing sector expressed statements of solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. Back then, we said warm words should be accompanied by action and responsibility.
We will come back to the sector in a few moments, but in order to pilot our own coverage, Inside the accommodation set up a new race and accommodation editorial committee. The purpose of the panel is to provide us with ideas for stories and research, and to question and inform how Inside the accommodation discusses its work, including achieving the goals of our Inclusive Futures campaign.
A number of ideas raised by the panel have already surfaced in these pages, and this month we are launching a new ongoing racism and housing survey.
This brings us back to the sector.
Over the past 11 months, we’ve posted interviews with staff who have left the industry, often due to a lack of opportunities for progress. A previous study by Altair found that only 7% of board members and 5% of executives in the top 50 associations in England are from black, Asian and other ethnic minorities (we will be relaunching our own survey this year, during the panel. ask).
“What measures are your organizations taking to combat racism and disparities faced by residents of ethnic minorities in your homes and staff working in your associations?”
There has also been a challenge on these pages from Baroness Lawrence. She suggested that the lack of diversity at the highest level is “definitely a problem” for the sector.
Baroness Lawrence also asked if owners who don’t publish or collect data on ethnic pay gaps “really care” about tackling the problem. “I’m not sure they do,” she said in the interview.
Such a significant challenge from such a prestigious diversity activist has elicited very few responses or discussions from industry leaders.
While there has certainly been progress – with the National Housing Federation’s Equality and Diversity Data Tool worth mentioning – there is certainly a lot more to be done.
It is vital that we have this discussion and push for change.
This month, for example, we take a look at publicly available figures on fuel poverty and humidity in homes across the country and the disproportionate impact on people belonging to specific ethnic minority groups.
The condition of homes in the area has been high profile in recent months, but how often has the conversation turned to those most affected? It should be a central part of the discussion to ensure that there are no gaps in the answer.
The panel has many questions for the housing sector, but I’ll leave you with just one: What steps are your organizations taking to address the racism and disparities faced by ethnic minority residents in your homes and staff? working in your associations? Contact us to let us know.
Martin Hilditch, Editor-in-Chief, Inside Housing
Racism and housing
Inside the accommodationThe Racism and Housing series aims to study how racial inequality and racism interact and impact housing – for tenants, for staff working in housing and for organizations. It has been launched a year since the murder of George Floyd sparked a huge global wave of Black Lives Matter activism.
We will be releasing monthly surveys on racism, race and housing, both what is wrong and what the industry is doing to fix it.
If you have an idea for a story related to this campaign, please contact Associate Editor (Articles) Jess McCabe, at [email protected]
Stories published so far include:
The impact of race on the likelihood of people living in a damp house or suffering from fuel poverty