Our ambition is to continue to lead on sustainability and raise standards across the PBSA sector.
We remain committed to transparency, good governance and driving up standards across the whole student accommodation sector.
We use data and insight to help us track our progress.
We believe that our decisive response to the Covid pandemic has consolidated our position within the sectors and improved our reputation across stakeholder groups.
Safety, including fire safety, remains a critical part of our strategy and we were one of the first companies to remove ACM cladding from our buildings.
Our supply chain plays a key role in helping us to achieve our ambitions and we will work closely with suppliers and other partners who share our values to bring about measurable improvements, ensuring sustainable supply chains are operational across the business.
We also contribute actively to the ANUK National Code for purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) and in recent years have helped to raise student welfare support standards via the code. Our annual Insight Report, delivered in partnership with the Higher Education Policy Institute, shares key insight and analysis around the attitudes, experiences and needs of students. It makes a strong contribution to the work of PBSA providers and universities, and many of our university partners.
We were the first purpose-built student accommodation provider to release students from their contracts during the first national lockdown.
In January 2021 when students were returning to university faced with further uncertainty and significant disruption, all eligible students received a 50% rent discount for up to 10 weeks. Our student rent support activity since the start of the pandemic has totalled £100 million.
During the pandemic we have played our part to do the right thing for students in a fair and proportionate way, always mindful that most students wanted to return and enjoy university life. Our properties remained open throughout the pandemic and through the efforts of our teams, none of whom we furloughed, we have continued to support students at all times.
Throughout the pandemic the business worked with a range of Government agencies to focus on student safety, including Public Health England who used our data and insights to inform their planning with the Department for Education.