Guddy Burnet, Senior Business Partner (Domestic Abuse) at Peabody, reflects on a meeting with Peabody Chief Executive, Stephen Howlett.

I recently had the opportunity to have a ‘cuppa’ with Stephen Howlett, our very approachable Chief Executive.

These informal chats are a different way of communicating with senior management — and keeping Steve informed on what is happening across the organisation. I find them useful in updating him on the work Peabody has been doing to improve the housing sector’s response to domestic abuse, and why we are regarded as sector leaders in this area. Steve has been a strong supporter of this work since I joined Peabody in 2009, helping the changes and improvements we have made to become embedded in the organisation.

Two women a week are murdered by a current or former partner in England and Wales. That we have significantly improved our identification over the years resulting in us getting a report of domestic abuse every 5 days.

We have now delivered our pioneering domestic abuse training course to over 35 housing providers and over 600 people across the country. We continue to work closely with Housing Minister for Wales, Carl Sargent, and I have been asked by two Welsh housing providers to deliver training for all of their employees.  

Our well-being policy, which addresses domestic abuse, has also attracted attention, and I will be sharing our best practice at a conference in Prague in October 2014.

DAHA launch event
  Guddy (second from left) at the London launch of the Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance

We launched the Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance (DAHA) on 1 September 2014. This is a partnership between Peabody, Gentoo and Standing Together, and our mission is to improve the housing sector’s response to domestic abuse, through the introduction and adoption of an established set of National Domestic Abuse Service Standards. Followig the launch, we have already received 20 enquiries from housing providers across the country, and we're delighted with the response. You can find out more at or follow us on twitter @DAHAlliance

It’s great to see domestic abuse higher on the agenda within the housing sector. This recognises the on-going steps we have taken to support individuals experiencing domestic abuse in our homes and communities, ultimately saving lives.