We live in a world that is not always fair or equal, where privilege assists some, and the lack of it can hold others back. As a housing association with a social purpose, we are taking proactive steps to correct these imbalances and to be a positive example of equality, diversity and inclusion best practice within our communities and the wider sector.
We are committed to being fair and inclusive, supporting diversity and providing inclusion for all of our customers, colleagues and stakeholders.
We are all different and these differences contribute to our success.
It is well recognised that organisations focused on building a more inclusive culture attract and retain a wider diversity of talented colleagues. As a result, this provides a more inclusive service to our customers.
Having an inclusive culture empowers colleagues to think differently and to share their experiences and perspectives, which in turn is a key driver for innovation, development and engagement.
This video helps explain what this means at LiveWest.
Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion strategy
Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion governance group
We have an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) group which consists of colleagues from across our organisation who are passionate about equality. They challenge what we do and how we do it, recommend equality, diversity and inclusion priorities and targets to our Executive team and Board, and are always pushing to deliver positive change.
Our anti-racism statement
We are committed to being an anti-racist organisation and to address inequalities not only within our own organisation, but to be a change-maker within the social housing sector.
Diversity and inclusion for our colleagues and customers has always been a focus for us. In 2020, along with most other employers in the UK, we couldn’t ignore the shift in global conversations about ethnicity. This led us to look at our own processes internally and address any unconscious bias towards our colleagues and customers from ethnic minority groups.
Awareness of ethnic discrimination has been brought to the mainstream and the housing sector must work together to end inequality and discrimination around race and ethnicity.
We want to be a pioneer in achieving this and have taken an honest look at the way we do things here. We know we can build on the foundations we have put down, which are set out in the six pillars of our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion strategy:
We recruit from a diverse pool of candidates and promote talent within the organisation, through career development and educational opportunities.
We make our services accessible to everyone.
Colleagues and customers feel they are valued, and their voices are heard.
We embrace and celebrate each other's differences.
We are honest and transparent with customers, colleagues, and partners. Relationships are based on mutual trust and respect.
We are comfortable to challenge, including unconscious bias, and we do the right thing.
We have an opportunity to be a force for positive change and working together to counter racism and inequalities will help create strong communities and better places to live.
Our Diversity groups
We have colleague Diversity groups focussing on three areas. Having one EDI group doesn’t allow us to focus on all of these different areas in the way that we should or would like.
True diversity means representation of different races, abilities, genders, orientations, backgrounds and experiences – everyone should have a voice.
Our Diversity groups help us deliver our ambition to be a more inclusive organisation.
They are a critical friend to the EDI group, helping them to understand more about different areas of diversity, and support them in delivering positive change across the organisation.
Race and Ethnicity Equality Network
Our Race and Ethnicity Equality Network (REEN) helps us to bridge the gap of racial inequality for colleagues and customers, helping us to embrace and understand racial equality and fairness.
The groups supports our organisation, encouraging the challenging of racism, through sharing stories and experiences, and providing a voice to our colleagues and customers.
Key areas of focus will include colleague representation, Black Lives Matter, learning and education and more.
Sexuality and Gender Equality group
Sexuality and Gender Equality (SAGE) are a group of colleagues who wish to improve the organisation’s and our colleagues’ understanding and awareness of the LGBTQ+ community. They are key in helping us promote and maintain equality, diversity and inclusion particularly around sexuality and gender.
Key areas of focus include raising the profile of the LGBTQ+ community, providing a support network for colleagues, educating colleagues on the community and making recommendations to the EDI group.
The purpose of the Disability group is to help raise awareness of disability, both visual and hidden and encourage greater support within LiveWest for anyone affected. The group will be supporting the business with becoming more aware about all disabilities, act as an ally for all colleagues and provide feedback and recommendations to our EDI group.
Key areas of focus will include sharing ideas and recommending ways that LiveWest can be more inclusive. The group will look at how we can create positive change for disabled colleagues and customers, and create a safe, empowering space where people can talk about issues that matter to them.
We are an inclusive employer.
Click here to read our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion policy.
We are signatories of the Race at Work Charter. The Charter is composed of seven calls to action for leaders and organisations across all sectors. Signing the Charter means taking practical steps to ensure we are tackling barriers that Black, Asian, Mixed Raced and other ethnically diverse people face in recruitment and progression and that our organisation is representative of our communities.
We are committed to the Zero Tolerance Hate Crime Pledge. Find out more here.