Apsana Begum employed by Tower Hamlets Homes as Diversity Officer in 2015

Apsana Begum, Labour parliamentary candidate for Poplar and Limehouse, was employed at Tower Hamlets Homes between 2014 and 2015 as a Workforce Project Diversity Officer.

While employed at Tower Hamlets Homes Apsana used her married name of Apsana Haque.

Apsana Haque was a finalist in 24 Housing Magazine’s Young Leaders Award and also the Excellence In Diversity Awards 2015.

On her official campaign website she makes no explicit mention of her employment with Tower Hamlets Council’s ALMO (Arms Length Management Organisation) which is responsible for the management of 22,000 social housing properties in the borough.

Tower Hamlets Homes award nominee

During her employment at Tower Hamlets Homes Apsana Haque was among five finalists in 24 Housing Magazine’s Young Leaders Award. Here’s the video.

 

And here is the relevant section from the Why I Stand page of Apsana’s official campaign website.

“I’ve served as Branch Secretary, CLP Equalities Officer and CLP Secretary, overseeing the de-merging of the constituencies and campaigning to end special measures in the Tower Hamlets Labour Party. I’ve consistently supported a new kind of politics: building trust among ethnically diverse and working class members, supporting a new generation of activists and engaging the wider membership. I’ve worked in the public sector promoting diversity and inclusion, and I’m a proud member of Unite and UNISON.”

Screen grab of campaign website

As you can see Apsana states that she has ‘worked in the public sector promoting diversity and inclusion’.

Why so vague?

Ms. Begum (as she now is) has made much of her local roots standing in Tower Hamlets but on her site she only refers to her employment at Tower Hamlets Homes as working in the public sector promoting diversity and inclusion and not ‘I worked at Tower Hamlets Homes as Workforce Project Diversity Officer’.

 

Tower Hamlets Council CEO Will Tuckley is currently dealing with two complaints relating to whether Ms.Begum improperly secured a council property.

Apsana Begum denies all allegations.

The Labour Party have been approached for comment and this story will be updated when we receive it.

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5 thoughts on “Apsana Begum employed by Tower Hamlets Homes as Diversity Officer in 2015

  1. It was social housing not a council house. Secondly housing associations have given out over 5000 social housing homes to workers a year to Tower Hamlets residents more than any other borough in the council. Heaven forbid they give one to one of their own workers. This is a non story and perpetuating racist tropes about housing allocations in the borough.

  2. This also raises a lot of governance and transparency issues for TH.

    This involves a senior TH Housing Employee whose job involves recruitment and retention of other TH Housing employees and would thus by definition means working closely with other senior TH Housing officials.

    That employee then applies for council housing and in circumstances that are not explained ends up obtaining that housing in advance of 19,000 other applicants.

    Irrespective of them being (IMO) the very likely future MP, even if they where just a TH Housing employee TH needs a proper and transparent governance framework to illustrate how that employee obtained council housing was not expedited or helped in ANY WAY by their close relationships with TH Housing officials.

    Incidentally this should apply irrespective of politics, it is just basic governance and transparency which should apply in any organisation where a potential conflict of interest could occur..

    1. The point of this story is that Apsana Begum, who is currently under investigation relating to how she obtained her Tower Hamlets Homes tenancy, has made no mention whatsoever that she worked for Tower Hamlets Homes for some time. Apsana Begum he makes much of her local roots in Tower Hamlets and working with and in the community. But she does not say ‘I worked as a diversity officer for THH’. Why not? As you say she was very good at the job as she was nominated for at least two awards. So, again, why has she not made anything of this? What is even more curious is that apart from her working in the private office of Lutfur Rahman to my knowledge her record of permanent employment was fairly minimal. Is the reason for this because she has never, as Apsana Begum, made any mention of her working for Tower Hamlets Homes as Apsana Haque? These are reasonable questions to ask and reasonable issues for anyone running for elected office to be challenged on.

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