Equality, Diversion and Inclusion Strategy
Equality, Diversion and Inclusion Strategy
YHN is proud of its deep commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) and what we have achieved so far. Our EDI commitments are set out in our EDI Policy. This EDI Strategy reaffirms our support and sets out priorities for developing EDI over the coming years. Our overarching goal is to embed and sustain positive EDI practice throughout our business so that EDI is never an ‘add-on’ but part of who we are and how we work.
The society we live in is changing: at one level it appears there is greater awareness of inequalities and injustice than ever before; on another, examples of discrimination and disadvantage are never far from the headlines. Our customer-base is very diverse and some of the most vulnerable residents of the city live in the homes that we manage. We know we cannot make a positive impact for customers or succeed as a business without recognising that ‘one size doesn’t fit all’, respecting and valuing people’s differences and making sure that our customers and staff feel comfortable to be themselves.
This strategy sets out our equality objectives and what we will do to deliver our commitments under the Equality Act 2010. It focuses on the mainstream; ensuring that EDI is integral to our key strategies and decision making, reflected in our everyday practice and promoted throughout our whole organisation. We will develop an action plan annually.
Our equality, diversity and inclusion priorities:
In developing our strategy, we have considered how we perform against the Social Housing Equality Framework and CIH Equality and Diversity Charter. We have also taken into account STAR Survey 2016, a tenants’ E&D survey, the Customer Service Committee, mystery shopping, staff engagement and equality monitoring information.
We received lots of positive feedback about the current customer experience and steps that we take, but also identified areas where we need to do more. This feedback is reflected in our priorities.
Our EDI priorities are:
- Embedding EDI into our culture
- Being easy to do business with
- Understanding our customers and reshaping services
- Supporting an inclusive and representative workforce
- Supporting independent and successful living
Measures of success will include:
- To increase overall customer satisfaction to 85% and within that to increase satisfaction amongst BME customers and customers under 55
- To hold more customer data in those categories where we hold the least information about our customers
- To increase employment of under-represented groups within our workforce
- For at least 75% employees to consider YHN ‘a great place to work’ and to understand more about the experience of staff, from groups with protected characteristics within the headline figures
Embedding EDI into our culture
We understand that embedding a culture of total inclusivity requires patience and long-term commitment. Our Board and Corporate Leadership Team will be supported by consistent and unequivocal messages from managers and team leaders to support a workforce who feel engaged and motivated by EDI issues. Decision-making will take EDI considerations into account.
Equality objective: To continue to develop our EDI culture through strong leadership, management and governance.
What we will do:
- Support the mainstreaming of EDI through our Business Strategy and other key strategies and policies
- Undertake Equality Analysis to inform key decisions made by Board and Executive Management Team
- Report annually to Board on EDI progress and key measures of success
- Develop EDI training for our Board and Customer Services Committee
- Encourage discussions and dialogue about EDI as part of ‘My Conversation’, team meetings and briefings.
- Continue to use industry frameworks and seek appropriate accreditation to support self-awareness and continuous improvement on EDI
- Ensure that relevant and proportional equality and diversity considerations are considered when procuring and commissioning services from contactors, partners and consultants
- Our Managing Director and Executive Management Team will champion EDI, celebrate our success and raise the profile of EDI internally with our staff and externally with our customers.
To be easy to do business with
At YHN we want to deliver a great customer experience: we want all our customers to feel that they are treated with dignity and respect always and that YHN is easy to do business with. Developing knowledgeable staff who really understand equality and diversity is essential to achieving this. As we begin to increase our digital offer to facilitate greater self-service, we recognise that new technologies will make access easier for some customers but have the potential to create barriers for others. We will ensure that as we design and introduce new channels for customers to interact with us that our services are easy to do business with for all customers.
Equality objective: To make sure our services are convenient and easy to access.
What we will do
- Review access to, effectiveness and uptake of E&D essentials e-learning
- Develop an in-house, face-to-face customer experience training programme
- Review practical Equality and Diversity advice and support to staff, including guidance on interpretation and translation, and ensure it can be easily accessed by staff
- Undertake a programme of equality analyses for key service areas
Understanding customers and shaping services
Customer insight is essential to meet the needs of our broad spectrum of customers. As set out in our Customer Insight and Engagement Strategy, our aim is to be an insight-rich organisation, recognised for taking appropriate and timely action in response to the knowledge we have gathered. Knowing up-to-date customer demographics, needs and preferences is a key strand of this.
Equality objective: To understand our customers through richer data, which will help us make better decisions and re-shape service delivery.
What we will do
- Develop a deeper understanding of current and future customers’ needs, aspirations, expectations and opinions, to ensure we provide the best possible services efficiently
- Use customer satisfaction and complaints information to understand more about the experience of customers with protected characteristics
- Increase customer data in those categories where we hold the least information about our customers
- Keep customer information up to date through simplified systems, increased customer self-service and clarified responsibilities.
Supporting an inclusive and representative workforce
A workplace that embraces diversity is more likely to attract and retain talented people and deliver inclusive services. We want our employees to feel that they can bring their whole self to work and be supported and enabled to ‘be their best’.
Equality objective: To recruit, retain and support a diverse, motivated and enabled workforce who reflect the communities we work with.
What we will do
- Increase the number of employees who feel comfortable about completing staff profile information and explore further ways of understanding the under-representation of some groups in the workforce (e.g. disability and ethnicity pay gap reporting)
- Explore how we can increase participation from under-represented groups when developing leadership learning and development opportunities
- Continue to develop Staff Network Groups and encourage colleagues to take part in them by providing practical support to the groups and promoting and supporting membership
- Foster a culture of inclusion by promoting good practice, setting clear expectations and visibly tackling behaviours that are unacceptable and discriminatory.
- Use our HIVE real-time staff engagement tool, and the insight gained from it, to understand the issues that affect our workforce and drive service improvements
- Explore whether our staff survey can breakdown results by key demographic groups
Supporting independent and successful living
We have built a wide range of support services that support vulnerable customers, and customers with complex needs, to live independently.
Equality objective: To support independent and successful living
What we will do
We will continue to develop a range of successful and sustainable support services which:
- Support independent living
- Promote pathways to increased independence
- Provide accommodation with support for customers with complex needs.
This will include:
- Establishing our new ‘Housing Plus’ vision and service for older and disabled customers
- Further develop our Ostara Alarm and Response Service, which supports people to live independently and safely in their own home
- Explore further supported living options with NHS and Local Authorities.
Appendix 1: Equality and Diversity Information
Baseline EDI information is set out in this appendix.
1. Our city, our tenants, our workforce
|Newcastle %||YHN customers %||YHN staff %|
* Men 51
|Sexual orientation||LGB **5.7||
Prefer not to say 10.4
Prefer not to say 6.3
|Trans||Not known||Not known||Not known|
***White British 81.7
Other White 3.7
White British 81.3
Other White 2.9
Prefer not to say 1.1
White British 91.1
Other White 2.0
No religion 28.3
Not stated 6.3
No religion 21.4
Not stated 4.9
Not known 28.4
No religion 30.0
Not stated 3.7
Not known 12.0
|Disability||Day to day activities limited a lot or a little
*Source: ONS population estimates
**Source: Government estimate. Stonewall suggest that this is an underestimate
2. Demographic information we hold about our customers
We hold ethnicity information about 93.34% of our customers.
We hold religion/belief information for 72.08% of our customers.
We hold sexual orientation information for 63.93% of our customers.
3. Key results from Star Survey 2016
Overall satisfaction with services
By age group, 90% or more of those aged 55 and over are satisfied with the service they receive, a significantly higher proportion compared to younger tenants (although at least 75% of younger age groups are satisfied). This is a common pattern in housing research and normally linked to higher service expectations amongst younger tenants.
By ethnicity, whilst the difference in satisfaction shown overleaf is not significant, BME tenants are significantly more likely compared to white tenants to be very dissatisfied (10% very dissatisfied cf. 3%). However, this may be due to the younger age profile of BME respondents to this survey compared to white respondents (92% of BME respondents are aged 54 or under compared to 54% of white respondents).
4. YHN’s Gender Pay Gap Information 2017
The mean pay for women is 4.6% higher than that of men.
The median pay for women is 16.5% high for men.