News & Press Releases
Senior Living Industry Groups Join Forces as Catalysts for Diversity and Inclusion
Calling the effort “critical to future,” leaders seek fellow professionals to co-create strategy and action plan
(ANNAPOLIS) – Argentum, the American Seniors Housing Association (ASHA), and the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC) have formed the Senior Living DEIB Coalition in a shared commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) to empower businesses operating in and around senior living.
The goal is to co-create a plan of action and strategy around DEIB, including the development of resources that inform, equip, and catalyze positive impact and thinking around DEIB.
“As industry challenges continue with recruiting and retaining talent, we hope this effort can serve to catalyze thinking around diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, and how it is critical to future business, how it will strengthen human capital, and why it is the right thing to do,” shared James Balda, president & CEO of Argentum.
ASHA president & CEO David Schless added, “It has been mentioned that talent is equal but oftentimes opportunity is not. This coalition is driven to an eventual goal of equally distributed opportunity, thus empowering diversity and industry growth.”
Initial steps under way
The coalition’s three-step process is designed to inform itself and the industry about the current DEIB picture, needs, and data and to determine the most effective ways the three industry groups can support DEIB in senior living.
As a first step, third-party consulting firm The Axela Group is conducting detailed interviews with several industry thought leaders on the current state of DEIB and the future vision for DEIB. Second, The Axela Group will form a diverse industry work group to address challenges and opportunities around DEIB. Third, the coalition and work group will collaborate with Ferguson Partners, a leader in industry intelligence, to develop and conduct a DEIB survey to gain organizational insights and perspectives from senior living operators and owners.
The themes and insights gathered through the interviews, work group, and survey will support the DEIB Coalition to co-create a long-term action plan and an industry call for positive and real change, as well as to prioritize the development of supporting tools, education, and resources for senior living owners and operators to advance best practices around DEIB.
“This initiative will be a very intentional and thorough process to launch a long-term movement around DEIB, with a desire to measure and realize industry progress year-over-year,” stated Brian Jurutka, president & CEO of NIC. “The member organizations within the coalition felt it critical to unite and advance this initiative together. We are all excited to be a part of this important industry movement and the positive change it will generate.”
Volunteers sought for work group
The coalition is seeking a manageable number of volunteers to form the initial work group, with diverse race, ethnicity, gender, orientation, and abilities representation being a priority. Pending applications and demand, some volunteers may not be offered a seat in this initial work group; however, all applicants will be added to a DEIB support list for future DEIB initiatives or opportunities.
The initial work group will meet February 16, 9:00-11:00 AM ET and February 22, 1:00-3:00 PM ET, with the potential for an additional session or two based on work progress. Senior living professionals interested in volunteering for the DEIB work group can fill out this information form or reach out to Olivia@TheAxelaGroup.com for more details. The application deadline is January 21, 2022.
Argentum is the leading national association exclusively dedicated to supporting companies operating professionally managed, resident-centered senior living communities and the older adults and families they serve. Since 1990, Argentum has advocated for choice, independence, dignity, and quality of life for all older adults.
Argentum member companies operate senior living communities offering assisted living, independent living, continuing care, and memory care services. Along with its state partners, Argentum’s membership represents approximately 75 percent of the senior living industry—an industry with a national economic impact of nearly a quarter of a trillion dollars and responsible for providing over 1.6 million jobs. These numbers will continue to grow as the U.S. population ages.
About the American Seniors Housing Association
Based in Washington, DC, the American Seniors Housing Association (ASHA) represents approximately 500 organizations involved in the financing, development, and operation of the full spectrum of housing and services for older adults—including active adult, independent living, assisted living, memory care, and continuing care (or life plan) communities. ASHA’s members, both for-profit and not-for-profit, collectively own and/or operate approximately 750,000 senior living units across the United States and Canada. ASHA is focused on legislative and regulatory advocacy, and the organization supports research and national initiatives that advance high-quality services for older adults so they can live with dignity in the setting of their choice.
About Ferguson Partners
Specializing in board, executive recruitment, and business advisory services, Ferguson Partners delivers premier strategic solutions to the seniors housing, healthcare, real estate, real assets, technology, retail, and hospitality sectors. Our global teams specializing in executive recruitment, management consulting, compensation consulting, and leadership development serve clients in our sector specialties. Our colleagues commit to understanding your business’s unique needs and advancing its success. Our boutique firm has nine offices worldwide, dedicated to offering personalized client services and integrated talent management solutions.
About the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care
The National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC), a 501(c)(3) organization, works to enable access and choice by providing data, analytics, and connections that bring together investors and providers. The organization delivers the most trusted, objective, and timely insights and implications derived from its analytics, which benefit from NIC’s affiliation with NIC MAP Vision, the leading provider of comprehensive market data for senior housing and skilled nursing properties. NIC events, which include the industry’s premiere conferences, provide sector stakeholders with opportunities to convene, network, and drive thought-leadership through high-quality educational programming. For more information, visit NIC’s website and follow NIC on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
About The Axela Group
The Axela Group is a certified small, women-owned consulting firm that offers customized organizational impact consulting and coaching for mid- to large-size organizations, associations, social businesses, and nonprofits who are transforming themselves and the systems in which they operate for good. With core competencies in coaching, culture, transformational change, instructional design and facilitation, diversity & inclusion, and organizational effectiveness, we put all of these together to create meaningful and impactful shifts for organizations and communities.