Inside Housing – Home – Over 60% of UK housing associations all have white management teams, diversity survey finds


Just over 60% of the nation’s largest housing associations all have white leadership teams, according to research from Inside the accommodation found.

Illustration: Ben Tallon

Divide lines


62 out of 101 housing associations responding to the diversity of @insidehousing in 2021 have all-white leadership teams, while 26 have all-white #UKhousing boards

Only 5% of executives and board members are disabled, compared to around 18% of the UK population, according to a study by @insidehousing #ukhousing

Inside the accommodationThe 2021 Diversity Survey, which assesses the diversity of the industry’s leadership and boards, found that 61% of 101 associations surveyed had no ethnic minorities on their leadership team.

The survey has been revamped this year to provide better data on who holds the top positions in housing.

The research found that 62 owners, of the 101 who provided the information, have all-white management teams. Four others did not provide any data on the ethnic origin of their cadres.

The survey also found that 87.4% of association board members are white, with 25 organizations telling us they have all-white boards.

Last year, a survey of Inside the accommodation found disturbing evidence that a lack of diversity on leadership teams and boards may fuel the departures of black, Asian and ethnic minority staff from the industry, as talent goes unrecognized.



“[Diversity] has a noticeable and positive impact on the staff who can identify with our makeup, ”said Jitinder Takhar, Managing Director of Homes for Lambeth.

“With a bit of luck [it] also has the same impact on the communities we work with, ”said Ms. Takhar, member of Inside the accommodationof the Race and Housing Editorial Committee, and whose members of the management team are 75% from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds and 75% from women.

Our survey results also highlighted persistent gender inequalities within upper levels of housing.

When Inside the accommodation conducted its first-ever diversity survey in 2016, four in ten board members and executives were women. Today, the numbers have hardly changed, with 41% of board members and 42% of management team members being women.

The survey found that gender imbalances vary in the UK and are most pronounced among G15 organizations, where 66% of executives are men. Of 1,744 senior executives, only one identified as non-binary.

When we asked about LGBTQ + representation among top positions, we found that there were no trans people at the executive or board level – at least in the 101 organizations that responded. – throughout the sector.

Some senior housing executives said Inside the accommodation that at management and board level, many people do not understand the practical ways in which sexuality and gender identity are relevant to the work of social donors, which is combined with a lack of competence culture to affect data collection and how it is used.

Our analysis also found that the percentages of managers and board members with disabilities – both around 5% – are well below estimates for the number of people with disabilities in the UK population (18%) and the number of social shelters. which include a disabled resident. (also around 18% in England).

Cairoen Detain, Development Officer at Golden Lane Housing, said: “I know I sound cynical, but the social change in society [and by extension the housing sector] has not evolved enough to support true leadership with disabilities.

Read the full survey results

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