The UNIFY (BAME) Network is growing – so find out more about us

Alison Muir
Alison Muir

Alison Muir, 04 June 2020

UNIFY is a collection of BAME groups working together across the housing sector to:

  • share information
  • promote initiatives
  • host BAME network events pooling resources to maximise impact
  • increase BAME senior management opportunities through cross housing BAME mentoring and coaching. 

UNIFY’s overarching goal is to increase inclusion opportunities at all levels, ensuring the diversity of staff is reflected throughout all areas of housing.

UNIFY’s five London based founding housing association members – Clarion, NottingHill Genesis, Peabody, Metropolitan Thames Valley and L&Q – has now grown to become a 14-strong national network, following significant interest from other G15 organisations and smaller housing associations. 

Its inaugural meeting with extended members took place in January including the refresh of its terms of reference and its key outcomes for 2020/21. These are to:

  • Increase networking opportunities and influence
  • Improve the collection of member organisations’ BAME data to inform Unify's approach and benchmark and monitor progress against agreed objectives
  • Develop an online presence
  • Host an impactful event

UNIFY, rebranded in 2018, successfully held an outreach event in November to engage between G15 housing association chief executives about what they are doing and their plans to overcome the distinct lack of opportunity for BAME people and their career progression, despite their ambition and capability. 

An event like this had never been done before and resulted in a welcome candid interchange, greater depth of understanding and awareness of issues facing BAME staff. There was a genuine commitment to refocus strategic efforts, including enhanced collaborative working to improve and realise sustainable impactful outcomes.

Each housing association in their own way is trying to create a change, but one thing that was apparent to all CEOs – this is a sector wide issue and more broadly a societal issue where collaborative work needs to be done. 

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If you’d like to find out more about UNIFY – or join us – please contact co-chair Leona Menville, leonam@inquilabha.org.