Riverside has signed up to the HouseProud Pledge scheme designed to ensure Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer residents are able to enjoy their homes without fear of discrimination.
HouseProud – the professional network for LGBTQ+ people working in the housing sector – commissioned the University of Surrey to research LGBTQ+ experiences of social housing.
The study No Place Like Home found that despite more than 10 years of equality in legislation, LGBTQ+ residents continue to experience discrimination in their everyday lives, including in relation to housing in some cases.
In response, Professor Andrew King from the University of Surrey and HouseProud have developed the HouseProud Pledge scheme in association with residents, staff members and sector leaders from across the country to empower social housing providers to improve services for LGBTQ+ residents and ensure consistent promotion of inclusivity.
The Pledge scheme promotes new frameworks for offering support and creating inclusivity, and all social housing providers can join free of charge. Those who sign up are actively committing to improve their housing services for LGBTQ+ residents and are expected to deliver on three core commitments within their first year:
- ensure that LGBTQ+ residents can have an input at an executive/strategic level
- increase LGBTQ+ visibility through the use of the Pledge symbol
- initiate a programme of staff training to improve understanding of LGBTQ+ lives
By engaging professionals working in the social housing sector to communicate more effectively with LGBTQ+ residents, sharing experiences and building trust, the HouseProud Pledge aims to make significant improvements for the LGBTQ+ community.
John Glenton, Executive Director for Riverside’s Care & Support arm and Executive Sponsor or our LGBTQ+ staff network, said: “Providing inclusive services remains as important today as ever.
“As the LGBTQ+ community is now more broadly accepted we can assume that discrimination towards the community no longer exists – this is not true.
“Signing up to the HouseProud pledge and being explicit in our commitment to providing LGBTQ+ inclusive services to our customers remains a priority for Riverside.”