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Building Safety Alliance to become a charity

The Building Safety Alliance – a collaborative group of stakeholders from the occupation phase with over 70 declared supporters from a wide range of organisations across the sector – have announced their intention to become a charity.

The alliance, which aims to drive culture change and competence across the occupation phase, was formed in March 2021 with representation from many disciplines active in the residential housing sector.

The Building Safety Alliance initially worked on implementing the recommendations from Working Group 8 of the Competence Steering Group, which was tasked to develop a competence framework for the building safety manager as per the recommendations in Dame Judith Hackitt’s report. It has since evolved to become the pre-eminent forum for all those organisations providing support, services and products to the occupied residential sector.

The group includes owners, residents, insurers, facility and property managers, representatives from professional and trade bodies and a wide number of professional services providers such as engineering, installing and maintenance.

The three principal professional bodies within the occupied sector – the Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management (IWFM), the Property Institute, and the Association for Project Safety, along with the Construction Industry Council – have all been fully involved and supportive of the Building Safety Alliance since its inception. They are now furthering their support by sponsoring the formation of a ‘Foundation Charitable Incorporated Organisation’.

Anthony Taylor, Interim Chair of the Building Safety Alliance, said: “This extremely welcome and timely development, after two years’ very hard work by many volunteer supporters, will provide us with an appropriately transparent governance regime to ensure that the Building Safety Alliance has a sustainable future for the longer-term. It will also provide a valuable platform for our supporters to be able to continue their collaboration to deliver the work needed to implement the new building safety regime. Our group continues to grow as the wider sector agrees that collaboration and co-ordination of effort to drive competence and culture change is achieved better, faster, and more consistently, together.”

Linda Hausmanis, CEO of IWFM, commented: “As a proud founder of the Building Safety Alliance, we are pleased to continue supporting the organisation’s transition to a charity. We applaud its ambition of developing greater collaboration towards a safer built environment and commend its independent, not-for-profit approach to coordinating the drive for culture change and greater competence. We’re only at the beginning of the journey, but we are excited about what can be delivered with collaboration and cooperation.”

In alignment with its ambition to drive change, the Building Safety Alliance has a growing number of special interest working groups (SIGs) to deliver practical solutions to the sector supporting best practice compliance with the Building Safety Act 2022’s through voluntary collaboration. The broad-church forum discussions have helped to inform policy, legislation and guidance, all to meet Dame Judith’s vision for safer housing, and for residents to feel safe in their homes.

The Building Safety Alliance will soon release guidance to the sector and dutyholders to support them towards meeting the golden thread requirements, guidance on competence expectations that ‘Owners/Clients’ (Principal/Accountable Persons) and those who contract works should be considering, and guidance as to how an organisation may evidence that it has the ‘organisational capability’ to deliver the services it is contracted to deliver.

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