Fourth ESG Report launched

We’re pleased to have just published our fourth Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report. In a year that has seen soaring cost-of-living and continued housing shortage across the country, we’re striving hard towards delivering against our ESG ambitions.

Similar to last year, we’ve created an interactive report that indexes our achievements against the Sustainability Reporting Standard (SRS) for social housing. Again, this year, we’ve also benchmarked our credentials against the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

By visiting the report link you can access different areas of focus to see what we’ve done with regard to addressing items such as climate change and ecology through to placemaking and supply chain management.

Some highlights from this report include:

Environmental:

  • Our stock condition survey (SCS; £3.1 million investment) means we can plan for the long-term, and invest and improve energy efficiency as part of our wider decarbonisation and sustainability roadmap to 2050.
  • Being mindful of the impact high energy costs are having on our customers, it’s essential we provide them with homes that are as energy efficient as possible. Against a national backdrop where the average property Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is D, 84.35% of our homes are rated EPC C or better.
  • To get an even better handle on the properties in our stock with older or missing data, we’re refreshing the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) energy efficiency information. This, along with an investment in stock energy modelling software will help us meet our target of all stock meeting EPC C by 2030. Importantly this information will also help us establish our longer-term carbon and energy reduction targets.

Social:

  • The safety of our customers is paramount. During 22/23 we continued with our excellent performance with building safety requirements such as Gas Servicing Compliance (99.9%), Electrical Testing Compliance (99.3%), Fire Risk Assessments (99.8%) and Decent Homes Compliance (99.9%). Our SCS will further support our drive for better data.
  • Customer voice is absolutely core to everything we do. Talking and listening to our customers helps shape our service offer, importantly it enables customers to hold us to account and is invaluable in helping us learn from customers’ experiences. These two-way conversations proved to be pivotal in us receiving external accreditation from the Tenant Participation Advisory Service (Tpas).
  • Our drive to make a positive impact in our local communities is hugely influenced and supported by the Aster Foundation. During 22/23 the Foundation helped over 4,000 people through its programmes including mental wellness, financial wellbeing, and employment. inc. the charity’s social incubator is now in its third year continuing with its great work to support social entrepreneurs.

Governance:

  • Our governance and viability remain strong. The Regulator of Social Housing conducted an In-depth assessment concluding our strong operational management and financial stability remain robust. This means we continue to hold our governance and viability ratings at the highest levels of G1 / V1.
  • We have long recognised that colleague wellbeing is key to ensuring every customer receives the best possible service. We have a bold ambition to become the number one employer in our sector. We’re delivering this through our flexible colleague offer which breaks the mould in items such as women’s health, mental wellbeing, and restorative practice.

Next year you’ll find we’ll be reporting against a revised ESG framework. We’re keen to adopt these new principles and demonstrate how we’re further delivering value against these three fundamental ESG themes. Watch this space!

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