Notting Hill Genesis has been named as one of the early signatories of Change the Race Ratio, a campaign led by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) to increase racial and ethnic diversity on the boards and senior management teams of British businesses.
We are the first housing association to sign up to the campaign, which forms part of a wider piece of work – Race at Work – which aims to improve diversity across our organisation.
Prompted by the worldwide reaction to the killing of George Floyd in May 2020, Race at Work draws on the findings of small group discussions between colleagues over the summer of 2020 and the outputs of our online Stop the Clock conference in October. It identifies six action areas for improvement, including a commitment to make the composition of our organisation more racially and ethnically diverse, especially at board and senior management level.
“Signing up to the Change the Race Ratio campaign was a logical step for us,” explains group director of central services Vipul Thacker. “The work we did during 2020 highlighted the urgency of addressing the under representation of black and minority ethnic groups at the most senior levels of Notting Hill Genesis. Although we’re making progress, we know we have more to do.”
Two recent appointments to the Notting Hill Genesis group board are an important step in the right direction. Fred Angole, who joined us in August 2020, has considerable executive and board level experience within the social housing sector including with the social housing regulator. In December 2020 we welcomed Arike Oke, the managing director for Black Cultural Archives, the home of Black British history. Arike has worked in heritage for more than 15 years, from the seminal Connecting Histories project in Birmingham, to building the Wellcome Collection’s archive, and co-convening Hull’s first Black History Month.
We have also appointed several people from BAME backgrounds to various of our board committees. Those committees additionally now include a resident representative on each to ensure the voices of our most important customers are heard at leadership level.
Take a look at our short video to find out more about our work to improve diversity at Notting Hill Genesis.