HCI has run or contributed to a series of campaigns in the last eight years.
Commission on Co-operative and Mutual Housing ~ A research commission and campaign involving Co-operatives UK, CCH, NFTMOs, Co-Housing Network, CLTs, CIH, NHF and a number of housing associations. The campaign helped shape the policy environment ahead of the General Election 2010 through a range of influencing forums, the media and a Parliamentary launch of the final report. HCI then produced a further report on the shape of co-operative and mutual housing in the UK, and the rise of community-led housing. Another report charted the growth of BME housing co-operatives in Birmingham.
End Legal Loan Sharking ~ The campaign was run with Compass, the political pressure group and a number of charities. Stella Creasy MP and Ian Austin MP were the two main politicians involved. HCI undertook research culminating in three research reports which contributed to the introduction of financial regulation and interest capping for the high-cost credit industry. HCI also obtained a full page feature in the Observer.
Enhancing Mobility ~ Developed with the Circle Group, this campaign has seen HCI produce two research reports with extensive coverage in the national media, including the FT, Times, Guardian and the housing trade press. The campaign influenced the creation of the National Mutual Exchange service. HCI’s research also informed Lord Best’s CIH report on social mobility and social housing.
Highgate’s Hidden Histories ~ HCI won a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to work with schools and the inter-faith forum in the Highgate area of Birmingham to explore the history of migration into Highgate since the late 19th Century. Raising the profile of Highgate’s history and enthusing local children about social and community history are two key project aims.
SHOUT Save Social Housing ~ HCI has played a part in the SHOUT campaign to save social housing from its long-term decline. HCI’s Director has been an Executive member, co-authoring the SHOUT Manifesto, and supporting the Capital Economics report ‘Building New Social Rent Homes’, which was launched in Parliament. HCI also provides support to SHOUT’s media work, writing articles and blogs, as well as supporting the campaign to maximise impact.
BME Housing in England ~ HCI partnered BMENational, the representative organisations for BME housing organisations in England, to undertake research about the legacy, value and future potential of BME housing organisations within the context of a rapidly changing operating environment.
Key outputs included research summaries and reports, a prospectus and forward strategy, promotion of the work of BME housing organisations in the media, a major presence at the CIH and NHF conferences, and a report launch at the BMENational conference.
End Furniture Poverty ~ This is a research project and campaign, developed with Liverpool’s FRC Group, one of the country’s major social enterprises, to underscore the problems of furniture poverty as part of the fall-out from the abolition of the Social Fund. Launched at the CIH conference in June 2015, the campaign’s first event was a roundtable at the NHF conference in September 2010 with Julia Unwin, the Chief Executive of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. HCI has produced an initial policy paper and a new report is due.
WMCA and Housing Issues ~ One of the major urban devolved authorities – the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) – has a remit for economic development and transport infrastructure investment, but housing didn’t figure highly. The campaign, run with Futures Network West Midlands, included the production of a major research report, stakeholder roundtables, coverage in the media and liaison with the WMCA, to raise the profile of housing issues in the West Midlands.
Reviving Rural Communities ~ This was a campaign built around a range of research to highlight some of the social and economic problems of left behind rural communities. The campaign also illustrated the crisis of affordable housing in the countryside and how NIMBYISM and changes to planning, arising from the Localism Act, have stunted housing supply. The campaign saw the publication of research about rural housing, community and economic needs, culminating in the publication of ‘Valuing the Village’ – a consultative document including the views of rural people in case study villages.
A Spotlight on Ethnic Inequalities ~ HCI produced a report in October 2016 with BMENational to coincide with Black History Month, the 40th anniversary of the Race Relations Act and the 30th anniversary of the Housing Corporation’s BME Housing Strategy 1986. The report on ‘race and housing, disadvantage and exclusion’ issues, looking back and looking forward, formed the platform for the campaign.
HCI obtained significant coverage in the national and trade media, aided by a special edition of 24Housing. The campaign reached its highpoint during the BMENational conference towards the end October 2016.