It’s not just us that struggles with diversity and representation!

Tuesday 30th of January 2024

The big topic at the January Tpas meetup for Local Government and ALMO engagement officers was diversity and representation – and the big takeaway was that everyone is in the same boat – working to make a difference but finding it hard.

However, some timely input from Tpas’s own Louise Holt, and some great conversations helped to move things in the right direction.

If you want to see what Louise had to say, you can find the video here

Here are some of the ideas coming out of the session that you might find useful:

  • Noticing and highlighting where there is already diversity in formal engagement.
  • Offering new and different ways for residents to get involved.
  • Offering more informal opportunities for engagement e.g, ‘community cuppas’ and estate days.
  • Comparing engagement stats with the demographic data in the 2021 census
  • Seeing whether any data has been gathered by a different section of the Council that might be useful for engagement.
  • Thinking about incentives for engagement as an option
  • Looking at how barriers to involvement can be overcome for diverse groups and how they can be supported to get involved.
  • Thinking about communication with all residents
  • Using AI translation tools to communicate more effectively with customers whose first language isn't English.
  • Recruiting Engagement Champions in different service areas, support and training for staff.
  • If you can't see it, can you be it? A useful saying to remember when carrying out tenant engagement.

There are also some things that people are looking for help with:

  • Whether to approach diversity as a whole or focus on one thing?
  • Understanding what other people are doing.
  • Ideas to get better data.
  • Working with specific groups to break down those barriers to engagement.
  • Data sharing within organisations, for better profiling.
  • Effective promotion of opportunities available to get engaged to increase uptake and improve diversity levels.
  • Ideas to get the 18 -30 age group participating at committee level.
  • Tips on getting more diverse people involved and how to extend menu of engagement options further, besides meetings.
  • Making sure our selected resident members represent all parts of the community and can speak on their behalf.
  • Collaboration with established groups.
  • Tailoring comms to under-represented groups.

About the meetup

The meetup took place on Zoom on 18th January 2024. We had 32 engagement officers taking part.

As usual, we had a series of interactive activities allowing participants to share experiences and ideas as well as trying out some engagement techniques. 

This time we started with ‘nine-minute networking’ – two nine-minute rounds of discussing two talking points in groups of 3 or 4, mixed up for the second round.

We then had a presentation and open discussion with Louise from Tpas. We finished, as always, with ‘open space’ – an opportunity for participants to raise anything at all to the whole group.

Our next meet up

Join our next meet up on 25th April, you can book your place here