Name: Jamie Cross
Working at: Local Government Association
What attracted you to the ngdp?
At University I spent two years as an elected student leader working to improve the lives of my fellow students. I was drawn to the ngdp as it offered me a way to continue to help improve services and systems for people in my community.
What did you decide to do for your ILM assignment?
As a student leader I was responsible for improving equality and access for all, and my passion was improving the student experience for LGBT+ students. When I arrived at the LGA I noticed that there was no equality and diversity strategy and so I chose to conduct some research to provide an evidence base for the ways we could improve. I later developed an implementation plan to enact any recommendations to better support staff like me to do well.
What has the organisational response been to your project?
I quickly gained support from all levels within the organisation, most importantly colleagues who also felt there was this need for action. The HR manager supported me every step of the way, both with the initial research, and the implementation of changes. I was encouraged beyond my original scope to work with colleagues to set up a staff LGBT+ network.
Any advice or tips for those applying?
Passion is a great driver of change and so I would advise thinking about the social issues and injustices you are most passionate about and discuss the ways you have worked to improve them throughout your life – not just whilst at University.