Branch Secretary :

Is Mental Health First Aid the answer? Depends on the question

£15 million programme


A number of employers on the social housing sector have embraced the idea of Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) in recent years.  The government has recently announced a £15 million p


Undercover rough sleeper

ITV Tonight Programme


In a TV programme screening tonight Tory MP Adam Holloway spends a week sleeping rough in Lo


Highly successful branch AGM

Marked increase in number of reps


Our highly successful AGM on Tuesday heard from our officer Adam Lambert that we have experienced a marked increase in the number of reps elected across the branch and positive reports


Survey on harassment and discrimination

Trade magazine Inside Housing has launched a survey on the prevalence of harassment, discrimination and negative comments based on identity in the housing sector.


Housing staff can respond to the survey


Homelessness: For a Right to Shelter

Homeless people harassed


Cuts to services working with the homeless have meant that our members are working in what are sometimes impossible conditions.  Local authorities have harassed homeless people


Jennie Formby: We must do better for women

My union helped me find my voice


Yesterday we reported on the 18.4% gender pay gap at ‘Homes England’. Here Jennie Formby,


Homes England gender pay gap 18.4%


Unsurprising but unacceptable


Unite reps at ‘Homes England’ said that the gender pay gap of 18.4% is unacceptable.  The new government agency, which replaced the ‘Homes and Commu


Two Fantastic AGM Guest Speakers

Announcing two fantastic, inspiring guest speakers ..
We are delighted to announce th


St Mungos back in the news: rough sleeper deportations

Worked with Home Office patrols that illegally arrested and deported


Homelessness charity St Mungos is once again under scrutiny over its role in working with the Home Office in targeting rough sleepers for deportation


The Double – glazed glass ceiling

Black, Female, and not badly Educated



A recent survey by Inside Housing highlighted the lack of diversity at senior le


‘Record profits’ for housing associations

New Moody’s report


UK Housing Associations once again made record profits according to a new report from VIEW

Annual General Meeting 2018

Notice of Branch Annual General Meeting:
6:00pm–6.30pm, informal welcome and food
6.30pm-8:30pm, Annual General Meeting
Date: Tuesday 13th March 2017


4% inflation – what about our pay?

Real hardship


The RPI inflation figure stands at 4% with fuel and light costs up 6.5%.  After many years of pay and conditions being squeezed in housing associations many Unite members are now calling for 5% pay i


CITB confirms it will exit training role

Skills black hole

News that the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has confirmed it will end all directing training by 2020, will create a skills black hole and strip the industry of the capability to undertake s


Strikes secure 20% pay increases at Manchester Mears

Unite claims victory following agreement in marathon Manchester Mears dispute


Housing workers have followed the dispute at outsourcing giant Mears in Manchester and will welcome this outcome.  The Unite housin


Peabody workers defend pensions

Human and kind?


by Jack Frost


Generally the more an organisation talks about being ‘caring’, ‘kind’ and ‘human’, the less it actually is in reali


Deepening skills crisis in construction

Industry remains in denial on construction skills chasm


Unite has renewed its demands for radical action to be taken to tackle the deepening skills crisis facing the construction industry.

Unite made


Unite Equalities Conferences

Branch members in many workplaces are taking action on a range of equalities issues and responding to Inside Housing magazine's 'Inclusive Futures' initiative.  Below Unite National officer for equ


Growing Unite Recruitment Prizes!

Between the 1st February and 30th April we are giving every member the opportunity to win a prize for each new member recruited. The prizes are:

Housing workers contribute to Labour Housing Policy review

Grenfell Tower fire brought home that Britain’s housing system is broken


The Unite housing workers branch has responded to Labour’s consultation on social housing policy by calling for a commitment to a mas


Tory council demonises homeless

Gloucester’s ad campaign shame


Our branch organises workers in a number of homelessness agencies and we camapign for decent properly funded homlessness services and against victimisation of the homeless as we


4.5% pay boost at Peter Bedford Housing Association

Positive result for members


Unite members at the small north east London supported housing organisation  Peter Bedford Housing Association (PBHA) have agreed a pay dea


Inclusive futures campaign highlights lack of diversity

Welcome if it results in action


The trade magazine Inside Housing has launched a major campaign promoting ‘diversity and i


Fare increases outstrip pay

We pay five times as much as European commuters


Commuters were faced with around 3.6% fare increases today.  As has been widely VIEW

Unite helps migrant workers with English

Unite helps migrant workers with English and so much more


Khadija Najlaoui’s first experience as a Unite rep will never leave her.


Najlaoui was representing a VIEW

'Homelessness is a national crisis'

Unite in more rough sleepers’ homes now call


Homelessness is a “national crisis” and the Tories are “unacceptably complacent” about tackling it, a cross-party committee of MPs said today (


Blow to Govt 'hostile environment' for EU citizens policy

Home Office policy of deporting homeless EU citizens is illegal, High Court rules


The High Court has ordered the Government to stop deporting homeless EU citizens under a controversial policy that has been ruled unlawf


Deal or no deal at Catalyst Housing

Is the Catalyst People Deal a fair deal?


A proposed new “People Deal” at Catalyst Housing raises real concerns for staff – below we detail the proposals and their impact.  Catalyst derecognised t


Grenfell families still homeless

Branch members support protest at Kensington Town Hall


Many families that survived the fire at Grenfell Tower face Christmas in hotels and only a small number have been permanently re-housed as over a hundred protestor


The battle for housing ideas

Pro-business ideology


There's a housing policy battle going on inside the Labour Party. Jeremy Corbyn has made a clear commitment to council housing, but others are continuing the doublespeak of the Blair/Brown yea


Unite challenges construction industry on training plans

Construction employers warn of Brexit cliff edge – Unite responds


In the midst of a widening skills crisis the construction industry must spell out how it will train more British workers to avoid a calamitous Bre


New Moody’s report gives financial thumbs up for associations

They can afford good services and a 5% pay increase


The ratings agency Moody’s has given housing associations a financial thumbs up noting the favourable policy environment and good operating margins in a new


Axe the Act - Housing Summit Pledges Action!

The second Axe the Act (AtA) Housing Summit took place on the 25th November attended by around 150 activists from housing campaign groups, housing organisations, trade unions, and other labour movement organisations. The meeting opened with speeches from Eileen Short, one of the AtA organisers, h


Budget – not the ‘game changer’ we need

Eighty per cent of housing budget going to private market


Just 2.5% of new homes built last year were social rented. Terrie Alafat, of the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH), is right to make the point: “So


Housing workers oppose 'hostile environment' for EU nationals

Judicial Review of the Home Office’s policy of detaining and deporting homeless EU citizens



Unite housing branch members will join a protest outside the Royal Courts on Justice on Tuesday Novembe


Inside Housing reports: how housing crisis hits housing workers

“I have been street homeless while working in the sector”


A major investigation by Insid


No more excuses: fit sprinklers now!

Government set face against paying


In the immediate aftermath of the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower the go


Labour and housing after Grenfell

Housing policy rarely been more political


After Grenfell, housing policy and what it’s doing to our communities has rarely been more in the political, media or public eye.


Housing campa


Dispatches on the #GreatHousingScandal

Familiar issues to Unite members


Publicly owned land sold off with minimal affordable housing built on the development – and the so called affordable housing that is built is unaffordable for local people; 


Mears strike resumes

Shocking levels of mental illness and stress revealed problems among Mears Manchester housing workers


Mears is one of the biggest contractors in the housing sector for outsourced repairs.  We have VIEW

Harassed at work? Unite can help

Dont suffer in silence


It all started with what at first glance might appear as an innocent comment here and there. But then the boss persisted.


Although Unite member  and Woolwich Ferry


Housing Associations: surpluses up, staff costs down

Sector has largely strengthened its financial position


Housing associations have booked record surpluses year after year, along with positive indicators in all the main areas of finance while squeezing their employees.


Mears: 49 days of strikes

Manchester housing workers announce extensive strike action

06 November 2017


Members of Unite employed by Mears in Manchester in housing maintenance roles will begin a programme of 49 days of strikes next wee


Housing association deregulation takes another step

Housing Associations reclassified as private bodies


An obscure letter from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) to the treasury signalling its intention to move £63.5bn of housing association debt back off the


Government response to unpaid sleep-in shifts

Government response to unpaid sleep-in shifts delays pay justice for thousands

02 November 2017


Unite, the UK’s largest union, which represents thousands of social care workers has sharply criticised th


Unite reps at Catalyst housing challenging unhealthy workplaces

National Stress Awareness day


Today is National Stress Awareness Day, but Unite reps are dealing with the problems resulting from stress in the housing sector every day.   Unite reps at Catalyst housing have


Unite takes legal action against Optivo on behalf of members

Mergers and restrucruings with scant regard to views of staff


Mergers and restructurings are pushed through across the housing association sector, often with scant regard to the views of staff.  Unite is pursuing


More strike action at Mears Manchester

Mears Manchester workers overwhelmingly back fresh industrial action in pay dispute


Members of Unite, the UK’s largest union, employed by Mears in Manchester are set to renew strike action in a longstanding dispu


TUC Conference: A New Beginning?

By John Calderon


The TUC conference this year comes after significant political events which have helped shape the context in which the union leaders and delegations have considered their strategies and tactics.


1. the rise of the Labour Party


RPI inflation hits 3.9% Britain still needs a #PayRise


Real terms pay cuts


Figures released on October 17th show inflation at its highest for half a decade with the R


Centrepoint: action needed on workload and stress

70% of staff thinking of leaving

Members in Centrepoint (the homelessness charity) are clear - action is needed now to reduce workloads and stress, and to provide frontline workers with the resources they need to really help young peop


Catalyst Housing: I would leave tomorrow if offered another job

Catalyst's CEO reviewed his own company as an employer and gave them 5 stars



Some of you may have heard of, a website where empl


Unite: May's housing commitments fall short


Government admits extra £2bn will fund only 5K homes a year

Theresa May’s promise to build “a new generation of council houses” during her speech to the Tory conference on Wednes


Unite demands action following racial disparity report

Another PR exercise?

Following mounting pressure on prime minister Theresa May after repeated delays to the publication of a racial disparity report, it was announced this week (October 3) that the study will be out on Tu


Fresh strike ballot at Mears in Manchester

Unite is balloting its members for fresh strike action in a longstanding dispute with Mears in Manchester.


Unite members employed in housing maintenance roles at Mears and at Manchester Working (a joint venture operated by Mears) have already taken 40 days of industrial


Hazards conference

Workplace health and safety reps


The annual Hazards conference takes place each year at Keele University. It is organised by Greater Manchester Hazards Centre (GMHC), part of a national network of Hazards Centres from


HA Workers and Residents - Open Meeting

The HA Workers and Residents Network will be holding an open meeting VIEW | DOWNLOAD

TUC discusses housing

The housing crisis – keenly debated at TUC Congress


Protecting workers' jobs and rights in Brexit Britain and an economy built on decent jobs with an active industrial strategy at its heart were among the key


RPI inflation hits 3.6% What about our pay?


Only senior executives avoid real terms pay cuts


Unite members will face a further squeeze as RPI inflation - the most realistic indicator of costs faced by workers - came in at VIEW

Plumbing pay deal win

Unite welcomes new agreement


Following lengthy negotiations with employer representatives from the plumbing industry, Unite has secured a three-year pay deal for plumbers employed under the Joint Industry Board


Remove 'pests' outrage

Eviction firm compares tenants to rodents


An eviction company has been slammed by Unite after running an advert comparing domestic renters to vermin.


The Facebook advert for the Remov


Branch member Glyn Robbins on Grenfell in the Guardian

Grenfell must be a turning point in housing – for staff and residents


Unite has been active in responsing to the terrible events at Grenfell, responding the VIEW

Join Us - Branch Meal - 18th August!

We've all been working hard and we deserve to relax for one evening at least! 
Instead of the usual branch meeting in August therefore, we're inviting you to join us for a meal:


Bogus self employment up

Huge rise in construction bogus self-employment demonstrates urgent need for radical employment reforms


Unite is calling for root and branch reforms of employment rights after new figures demonstrated bogus self-employ


Grenfell: possible corporate manslaughter charges

Unite welcomes police ‘corporate manslaughter’ probe into Grenfell fire


The police’s investigation into possible corporate manslaughter charges relating to the Grenfell Tower tragedy, when an estimate


#BankStrike! Bank of England first strike in 50 years

Solidarity events


Tuesday 1st August Badge Day – collect a strike badge from the picket and wear to work!

Wednesday 2nd August Picnic Day – join the picket line for a lunchtime picnic to show your


When 'sleep-in' time counts!

In supported housing the question of working hours has been hotly debated.  Here is a guide for reps and members cross posted from Unite for our Society.




Barts Strike: Low paid workers two week action

Pressure on Serco


Pressure is growing on the private contractor Serco as hundreds of low paid workers at Barts Health NHS Trust prepare for a two week strike from Tuesday 25 July in their continuing fight against low p


Our Reps and Activists are Schooled in Leadership!

Our hardworking reps quite often have to work unsociable hours, evenings and weekends, and any time off is therefore very precious. However, over 20 reps were prepared to give up a Saturday to come along to our first Leadership Forum on Saturday 15th July.




Catalyst housing: harsh new sick policy


Is Sports Direct really a model for housing associatio


Mears / Northwards Housing strike escalates

Mears Manchester housing workers set to begin all out strike action


Unite, the UK’s largest construction union, announced today (Monday 3 July) a dramatic escalation in strike action as part of a long running dis


Hot and bothered

Is your office too hot?


Amanda Campbell, Cross posted from UNITELive


You know what it can be like at w


Grenfell Tower Independent inquiry plea

Unite concerns over tenants’ fears ignored


Ryan Fletcher cross posted from Unite Live


Successive housing ministe


After Grenfell: change needed in construction

Unite calls for fresh start on construction regulations following Grenfell fire


Unite, the UK’s largest construction union, is calling for a radical new approach to regulations and safety laws, following the Gren


Mears strikers protest at Chartered Institute of Housing


£3,500 less for doing the same work


Members of Unite in social housing will be demonstrating outside the Chartered Institute of Housing’s Housing 2017 conference at the Manchester Central C


Unite @ Sanctuary - Next Members Meeting

Changing our working conditions at Sanctuary

Every Rep's a Leader - Leadership Forum

Every rep’s a leader - and every activist is too! We all have to use leadership skills in our role, whether it is in collective bargaining, organising and campaigning, making sure the union is visible in the workplace, or taking on casework. The strange thing about leadership skil


Clarion: a fair slice of the cake?

Undervalued, overworked


We were going to send some cake round today but decided to eat it ourselves and tell you to know how much we enjoyed it. We’ve heard you’ve got so much work, increased targets and, m


Unite steps up Mears strike

Unite steps up action in Mears Manchester housing dispute


Unite, the UK’s largest union, is stepping up the pressure in an increasingly bitter dispute with private contractor Mears and joint venture company Manch


Unite seeks action after sharp fall in construction inspections

Unite seeks action after sharp fall in construction inspections revealed


Unite, the UK’s principal construction union, is seeking urgent meetings with ministers and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after a f


Grenfell: Never again

Numerous branch members attended Friday’s protests to express solidarity and we will be on Saturdays protest from midday at Kensington Town Hall.


Below see reports from the national Unite Live w


#GrenfellTower: Donate Protest Petition

Residents and housing workers have expressed their shock at the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower, Silchester Estate, last night.

The Unite Housing Workers Branch sends solidarity to all affected and sends deepest sympathies to


Grenfell Tower appeal

Call for investigation


There has been a wave of sympathy and help for the victims of this fire.  The housing workwers branch has produced a statement expressing sympathy and noting some of the troubling questions


Fire at Grenfell Tower

Need for investigation


Residents and housing workers have been shocked by the events in Kensington last night.  Below is an initial statement expressing our sympathy and concern at the incident.



United We Stand!

Standing shoulder to shoulder with residents help us as trade unionists to achieve more of what we want - better pay, better working conditions, and healthier environments. It's as simple as that!


The Housing Association Workers and Residents Network


Unite condemns Mears beard ban decree

Penny pinching stupidity


Unite has condemned a decree by outsourced housing maintenance company Mears, which bars workers from having beards as ‘penny pinching stupidity’.




Manchester housing strikers determined

Striking Manchester housing workers in ‘crazy car clamping’ threats


Private housing contractor Mears and joint venture company Manchester Working, are accused of issuing ‘crazy car clamping’ th


Fighting back at Thirteen Group

Thirteen Group concede and agreement is reached


As we reported yesterday RPI inflation has hit 3.5% and is rising, when you conmpare thuis to pay in the sector it is no wonder that Unite members in housing show a g


Inflation hits 3.5%

Unite warns of ‘wage squeeze’ as inflation outstrips average earnings


Britain’s largest union, Unite warned of a continuing Tory ‘wage squeeze’ not seen since Victorian times as the latest


Striking housing workers to protest outside Manchester Town Hall

Dispute with Mears and "Manchester Working"


Striking members of Unite employed on social housing maintenance contracts in Manchester will stage a demonstration outside of Manchester Town Hall, on Monday 15 Ma


Clarion Housing: Unite recommends rejection of pay offer

Offer represents real terms pay cut


Clarion housing has offered staff an increase of 2.5% on basic pay rates.  Inflation is currently running at 3.1% measured by the Retail Price Index (RPI) and all analysts proje


Inflation to reach 3.4% CPI this year

NIESR: 'households will feel the pinch'


Inflation will hit 3.4% CPI later this year according to the respected National Institute Economic and Social Research (NIESR) in a VIEW

Low pay: Housing workers offered financial counselling

Family Mosaic offering staff financial advice to ease mental health concerns


Housing association Family Mosaic has announced that in response to the pressures resulting from low pay they will “offer our staff the


Book release: New book on housing by branch member

There’s No Place: The American Housing Crisis and what it means for the UK



Branch member Glyn Robbins has written a new book:


My book, There’s No Place: The A


Election issue: Rough sleeping rising

New rough sleepers in London soar by 15%


The number of new rough sleepers in London has risen by a shocking 15%; new figures from CHAIN (Combined Homelessness Informatio


And The Winners Are ...

Ten housing associations were given Tarnished Trophies at the Alternative Housing Awards on the 26th April, to loud jeers by residents and workers. 

  1. Overall Lousy Landlord - Hyde Housing Association Limited

Alternative Housing Awards Surge to 718 Entries!

The online voting for Alternative Housing Awards has closed after receiving an incredible 718 entries. Thank you to all those who have submitted nominations. We are now working through


Clarion's Possible Partnership With GLA

The Unite Housing Workers' Branch has condemned the discussions taking place between the Greater London Authority and Clarion Group with the potential to create a strategic partnership ( VIEW

HAs' Serial Neglect of Residents and Properties

Housing associations have been guilty of 'serial neglect of residents and properties' according to the Guardian. It highlighted allegations against many of the biggest names in the sector, including Catalyst, Sanctuary, Notting Hill Housing, and One Housing Group. Almost all of these


Hyde Tops the League of Shame! Nominations for Bad Awards So Far

See also: Lousy Landlords and Bullying Bosses - Welcome to the Alternative Housing Awards - press release

Hyde Housing Group is now topping the league of sham


Minimum Wage to Rise by 4%

The Annual National Minimum Wage Rise Recognises The Real Rising Cost of Living


The National Minimum Wage for workers aged 25 and over is rising by more than 4%, increasing from £7.20 an hour to £7.50. For those working full-t


Keyworkers Condemn One Housing 40% Rent Hike

Keyworkers including teachers and nurses, all residents of One Housing Group (OHG), have condemned the organisation's threat to raise rents by 40%.


Many are deeply concerned that they cannot meet such rent increases, particularly a


Nominations Pour in for Bad Awards!

It is clear that despite record surpluses and highly paid executives, our sector is awash with bad landlords and bad employers as nominations flood in for the Alternative Housing Awards.


Less than a week since nominations opened, we have already received almost 100


Unite says #Jobstownnotguilty

Sit down protest


In November 2014, as part of the protests against the privatisation of water in Ireland, an impromptu sit-down protest stopped the car of a minister and her entourage.  Now, those protesters are c


Unite responds to Labour MP

Unite response to Jess Philips’ call for candidates to back a women’s charter


Members will know that our branch agreed to nominate Len


Elections: Your union is run by you

Ballot papers posted from 27 March


Elections run until 19th April


Following discussion at a recent branch meeting we nominated the following candidates and would encourage members to supp


Does Your Association Deserve a Bad Award?

We have regular news items about the misbehaviour of our employers. Now, housing workers everywhere can name and shame them for their bad behaviour. Nominations can be made anonymously and online VIEW

Jump in inflation rate underlines case for pay claims

4% minimum pay increase in the housing sector needed


The headline inflation figure jumped to 2.3% in February.  Figures released today show that inflation has risen by much more than expected; the main drivers of


Construction workers have high suicide risk

Construction must radically reform to reduce high suicide rates


Unite, the largest union for construction workers, is calling on the industry to take radical action to reduce the high number of suicides among its workf


Unite elections and Tom Watson

Unite statement on Tom Watson MP’s claims on Momentum and Unite


Unite is holding elections for the positions of General Secretary and for members of the Executive Council.  Voting starts on March 27th.


Unite supports #MarchAgainstRacism

London: 12:00 noon, (BBC) Portland Place, W1A 1AA

For information and details for other cities see here



New evidence that housing associations can afford decent pay


Sector optimistic and ready for future challenges


'Economic sentiment' among housing associations is at its highest level since the financial crisis according to an VIEW

Unite on post Brexit construction workforce

Responding to RICS


Commentating on today’s (15 March) Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) survey that warns that the UK construction industry could lose 8% of its workforce due to Brexit, Unite acting g


Housing workers calling for 4% pay increases

Resounding message


Unite has agreed to campaign for a minimum 4% pay increase in housing and reps have been getting a resounding message fr


Masking sickness at work?

‘Sickies’ down – but do figures belie real illnes


On Friday we reported a


Clarion back-tracks on denying sick pay

New group to pay sick pay from day one


Stung by accusations that the newly created Clarion Housing Group was becoming the Sports Direct of housing associations they have this morning told staff that:  “


National apprentiship week & dead end construction apprentiships

Unite for apprentiships


National Apprenticeship Week 2017 is taking place from 6-10 March 2017, promoting app


Rough sleeper immigration raids and homelessness charities

Homelessness agencies accused of being complicit in coercive deportations


Homelessness agencies including St Mungos are identified as complicit in immigration raids and a process that results in some of London’s


Leeds Housing Crisis Summit!

Leeds 'Hands Off Our Homes' has called a meeing to discuss the local housing crisis and to develop a campaign for affordable solutions:


Campaign Planning Day
10.30am – 3.30pm,
Sat 25th March
Oxford C


Pay: "Utterly shameful"

Shocking report shows UK nearly bottom for wage growth


Housing associations have been booking record surpluses year after year while squeezing


Stop benefit sanctions

National Day of Action Against Sanctions - Thursday 30 March 2017


Pushed people into sleeping rough


The government’s despised benefit


Work proper hours in housing

Talking point


Work your proper hour’s day always gets press coverage and becomes a talking point - this year Friday 24th February.  It’s the day when the average person who does unpaid overtime finis


Next Workers and Residents Meeting Scheduled!

Monday 6th March 6.30pm

Faraday House, 48 Old Gloucester St London WC1N




Work Your Proper Hours Day, Friday 24th Feb 2017

Housing staff work well over contractual hours


Work Your Proper Hours Day, Friday 24th Feb 2017, is the day when the average person who does unpaid overtime finishes the unpaid days they do every year, and starts earn


Housing Associations book record surpluses - again!

£3.4 billion surplus over the last year


English Housing Associations have produced a record surplus of £3.4 billion over the last year according to the latest ‘Global Accounts’ for the sector pr


Clarion plan to deny sick pay for first three days of illness

Hardly a way to boost morale


Newly created housing association giant, ‘Clarion’ is planning an attack on staff terms and conditions meaning that staff will not receive occupational sick pay for the first th


Housing Association residents and workers form network

Threat from housing act


Housing association residents gathered to discuss creating a network with housing workers to fight the threat from the new housing act and from increasing commercialisation.  The meeting wa


New stress guide from the TUC and HSE

Tackling workplace stress


A new guide to tackling workplace stress using the health and safety executive management standards has been produced by the TUC and the Health and Safety executive.  Branch members incre


Clarion staff vote for union recognition

Management organised ballot


In a management organised vote staff at Clarion have supported union recognition.  Around half the staff participated and a clear majority of 61.4% voted for recognition.  This fol


High heel ‘probe’

Report: discriminatory dress codes widespread


Dress codes have been in the news again recently.  The report below is from the Unite Live website.  There are


‘Useful as a chocolate fireguard’


Govt’s strategy fails construction’s skills gap


After six years of fiddling and relying on the so-called invisible hand of the market to correct industrial imbalances the government has fin


Unite committed to union rights for Clarion staff

Staff concern as management disrupt lines of communication


98% vote for industrial action to defend union rights


It was disapointing to sta


Money's Too Tight to Mention!

Pay Campaign Training Day a Success!


It's probably no surprise to fellow members of the sector that whilst the housing sector grows richer, social house building is curtailed, and our members' wage rises fail t


Meet Len McCluskey!

We are delighted to announce that Unite General Secretary Len McClusky will be speaking at our next branch meeting as follows:


6pm on Tuesday 7th February
Diskus Centre, Unite HQ
128 Theobalds Rd, London WC1X 8TN


End poverty pay at British Airways



Cabin crew working for British Airways ‘Mixed Fleet’ taking strike action over ‘poverty’ pay levels which are leading to crew sleeping in their cars between shifts.   Th


Cancer all-clear for night work based on ‘bad science’

Methodological flaws "invalidate" conclusions


Night shifts are bad for your health, and many of our members who work night shifts have been particularly concerned at the mounting evidence that night work is l


Stop STP's Don't slash trash & privatise our NHS


Demonstrate on 4th March 2017 and protest now


The NHS faces another wave of drastic cuts, privatisation and reorganisation. This is going to have a massive impact on patients and staff alike. We must f


Union members protest at Clarion launch


Union members committed to fighting for workers rights


A lobby of the launch party for Clarion met a friendly response as visitors arrived at the Royal Society of Arts.  members of Unite and the o


HA Workers and Residents Meeting

Axe the Act and the Unite Housing Workers Branch have organised a meeting open to all housing association workers and residents to develop a network for greater campaigning strength. As with public services, to defeat the Housing and Planning Act and the austerity agenda, workers and service user


Wishaw housing dispute: Strike fund launched

Housing association wants to slash holiday pay and increase working week


Unite the union has launched a strike fund appeal to support workers at Wishaw & District Housing Association.




Mega meger housing association threatens union derecognition


Clarion formed as biggest housing association - starts by threatening union derecognition


Affinity Sutton and Circle housing associations completed their merger on November the 30th with staff facing t


Call to stop the salary slashing of supported living workers

Please support the call to stop the salary slashing of supported living workers


Supported Living (SSL) Workers at Sanctuary staff have received letters from their employer threatening a possible dismissal and re-engage


Sanctuary: We'll Dismiss and Re-Engage Staff


Sanctuary Supported Living (SSL) staff have received letters from their employer threatening a possible dismissal and re-engagement if they do not agree to huge pay cuts, even though the project makes an annual surplus. The SSL project contributes to the parent organisation&


Defend domestic violence refuges


'Sisters uncut' are organising nationwide protests highlighting the impact of cuts on domestic violence refuges and we as Unite housing workers have sent a message of support.  Below we reproduce an article from their VIEW

Strikes at the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)

Unite and PCS members at equality watchdog strike over ‘swingeing’ cuts


We agreed to send solidarity and a donation to strikers at our branch meeting on Tuesday night.


Fighting an attack on annual leave at St Mungos


"Hey Howard, Leave our annual leave alone"


Workers in St Mungos have been faced with a reduction in annual leave, and Unite is supporting their fight back.  They are angry that, once ag


Wishaw Housing Association workers in second four day strike

Stop attacking conditions


Unite the union is calling on Wishaw and District Housing Association in Scotland to stop attacking the conditions of hard-working members.  Workers at the housing association will strike


Unite Says: No Salary Slashing at Sanctuary!

The Unite Housing Workers Branch got into the Halloween spirit, doling out money from cauldrons to get across the point that Sanctuary Housing Group (SHG) should not be cutting the salaries of it's frontline workers. 



Housing association downgraded because of fire safety


Unite reps will remind management


The social housing regulator has downgraded another housing association following failures to do with its fire risk assessments.  Manchester based St Vincent&rsqu


Unite victory for breastfeeding mums

Working women’s right to continue breastfeeding after returning to work


Unite Legal Services’ ground-breaking easyJet VIEW

Sanctuary housing





Sanctuary Housing Group, are planning to cut salaries of workers by up to one third despite hundreds of workers challenging the cuts in the consultation process. T


The Human Reality of Government Housing Policy

Failure to relate abstract policy to peoples' everyday lives


The growing mess around the Housing and Planning Act partly results from a failure to relate VIEW

Axe the housing act - new figures illustrate crisis

43% population in substandard housing


Homelessness is rising and by any measure Britain’s housing crisis is getting worse.  Today a new report shows that 43% of VIEW

Work stress at record levels - see our new resources


Seven in ten reps report problem


Findings published by the TUC on 10 October  indicat


Butterfields tenants win


We will not move


Tenants on the Butterfields estate in Walthamstow, east London, have secured a victory against the housing crisis. They collectively said 'we will not move' and they will now b


Mental health services reeling from funding crisis

Psychologists’ survey highlights NHS mental health funding crisis


Mental health services are reeling from a funding crisis, low morale and increased workloads, says a survey of NHS applied psychologists released


Double blow for Bromley council over library sell-off plans


Bexley pull out


Bromley council has been dealt a double blow to its plans to sell-off the borough’s treasured libraries.

Bexley council has informed Bromley council that it will no


Housing Association slammed by regulator over fire safety

Regulatory notice


Tower Hamlets Community Housing Association (TCHA) has been given a “regulatory notice” by the social housing regulator becuase of a failure to adress fire safety issues.



Labour conference opposes housing act

Councils should 'pause and review' housing act provisions


Labour Party conference passed a resolution opposing the housing act and calling on councils to “pause and review the Act's provisions”


Unite victory in Bromley

Bromley’s volunteer-run library threat is quelled

We have reported on struggles in Bromley and Unite branch secreatary Kath Smith has spoken at our m


Housing crisis roadshow

Only Corbyn has put forth a realistic solution to the present shambles


A commitment to build one million homes in five years — half of them to be council homes — and control rents in the private rented sect


New figures: Housing bosses get inflation busting pay increases

Chief Executive pay up 4% on average while services and staff pay are cut


Overall pay for Housing Association bosses is up by 4% this year, once again an inflation busting increase according to Inside Housing’s p


Unite ‘dismayed’ at threat to 64 housing association jobs

Riverside job losses


The announcement today (Wednesday 3 August) of a possible 64 job losses at the Riverside housing association in Cumbria has been met with dismay by Unite, the country’s largest union.  R


Register To Vote In The Labour Leadership Election!

Unite members can register before 8 August


If you register before noon on 8 August Unite members can vote. Unite is affiliated to the Labour Party you do not to pay any money to do this.




Don’t cut our Human Rights!

EHRC facing 25% budget cuts


Unite the Union and PCS have launched a joint campaign to highlight the huge budget cuts of 25% over the next four years facing the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) which will res


Bromley Council workers strike against privatisation

Unite demonstration Saturday 23rd July

Libraries strike this week


Libraries across the borough of Bromley face another wave of strike action starting this S


Joining Unite and eligibility to vote in Labour leadership elect

Joining Unite the union – eligibility to vote in the 2016 Labour leadership election


Unite is a trade union representing working people in most sectors of the economy.  
People seeking to join Unite


HCA Pay Dispute - Members Vote on Resolution

Unite members at the HCA are currently voting on whether to withdraw the threat of further strike action after a series of talks with management addressed a number of concerns that had led to strike action in May.


The campaign has involved joint action with th


Jeremy Corbyn raises housing in Miners Gala speech

#KeepCorbyn #Axethehousingact


Jeremy Corbyn speaking today in Durham “People tell me that Labour will be more appealing when it starts talking about these sorts of things and starts talking about something else.


Housing: the fight will go on - with Corbyn at our side


Housing fight will go on with Corbyn at our side


Britain faces dangerous times after the EU referendum campaign and Labour plotters trying to oust their leader, but amid it all there’s the


Next branch meeting Tuesday 19th July


Branch meeting one week later than usual - NB Changed venue


Our next branch meeting is on Tuesday 19th July – not the usual second Tuesday in the month.  As usual all members are welcome, tr


House building by housing associations down

Just 16.6% completions are for social rent


Building by the big housing associations fell from 40000 to 31000 last year.  Just 16.6% of them social rent according to new figures today for the top fifty developing a


Breaking news - Shadow housing minister resigns

Breaking news - John Healey resigns


Housing shadow minister John Healey has joined the resignations along with his team.  Just at the time when it is vital to build a really vigorous campaign to stop the vicious n


Housing workers support Jeremy Corbyn

Mandate to fight austerity


Jeremy Corbyn attracted enormous support last summer when he stood for the Labour leadership and secured a clear mandate to fight austerity.  The resignation of Cameron and the crisis in


Unite Launches 'Work, Voice, Pay' Guides

As part of Unite's industrial strategy, a range of Work, Voice, Pay guides have been produced to assist you, our shop stewards and representatives, in your critical work on behalf of our members.



Unite statement on Orlando massacre

Unite expresses its horror and revulsion at the massacre carried out at Pulse nightclub in Orlando last week, and condemns this horrific act. Our thoughts are with the friends and families of the bereaved, and with the many injured.  We extend our hand in solidarity to our brothers and siste



The new housing act will help property developers and landlords make profits but it will do nothing for people who need affordable secure homes.  Some housing associations are currently making deep cuts hitting jobs and services while piling up record surpluses; the act prepares the way for


Alison Reinstated

It is is good to report the reinstatement of sacked Unite health and safety rep Alison Morris – you can read about her case here


“Following lengthy negotiations I can co


Access to Justice: Exposing the Myths

Stacks the odds in favour of the employer

A new publication from the Institute of Employment Rights demolishes the saloon bar myths disseminated by neoliberal politicians, employers’ organisations, and the right-wing press on wor


Unite in Peabody reject 1.5% pay offer


No votes in favour of acceptance

A growing Unite membership in Peabody has decisively rejected a pay offer of 1.5% - with NO votes cast in favour of acceptance.  In just over 10 days,  a staf


HCA: Government housing staff strike for fair pay

Unite members at Homes and Communities Association (HCA) are striking for fair pay and proper pay negotiations.
Unite’s 147 members at two locations will stage a 24 hour strike commencing at 00:00 on Thursday 19 May over an imposed 1 per cent pay deal fr


Housing Associations: Friend or Foe?

Housing associations have moved far from their roots in Victorian philanthropy and ’60s radicalism, says GLYN ROBBINS


BRITISH housing policy is at a crossroads. Now the Housing Bill has limped through Parli


Pushed out for being pregnant #MothersWork

Pregnancy discrimination is shockingly rife


Two years ago at Sports Direct’s infamous warehouse in Derbyshire, where working conditions have been described as ‘Victorian’ a woman gave birth in a


Unite HCA Pay Strike - Solidarity Appeal Launched

Unite at the HCA has announced that it will be taking strike action on Thursday 19th May and has launched an appeal for solidarity.


The dispute has arisen because the Agency ignored the union pay claim submitted in June 2015 and refused to negotiate for eight month


Inside Housing survey assaults to housing workers

Have you been physically or verbally assaulted during your work as a housing professional?

Inside Housing has launched a questionnaire for housing staff – it can be completed here.



PCS Vows to Join Unite Strike if No Speedy Resolution on Pay

As Unite members meet to discuss their plans for a strike following a successful strike ballot announced earlier this week, the PCS union which is also recognised by the HCA has threatened to escalate to an industrial action ballot if the Agency fails to negotiate within the next two weeks.<


Reach out recovery heath and safety dispute

3,000 emails in support of Birmingham health & safety rep over sacking by drug charity in ‘fire alarm’ row


The boss of a Birmingham drug and alcohol charity, which sacked health and safety rep Alison M


Housing Bill ping-pong

Peers stand defiant against government plans



Hajera Blagg, Friday, May 6th, 2016 Unite Live


The government is struggling to push through its housing agenda as its Ho


HCA Unite members vote for strike action

Call for fairer allocation refused


Unite members at the Homes and Communities Agency have voted in favour of strike action.  Members are angry that once again their call for a fairer allocation of the pay settleme


Housing bill: the fight goes on

A generation has grown up in a world where houses are just assets for investment. We need to express a vision for housing’s future, argues GLYN ROBBINS


IN THE face of growing opposition, this week the Torie


Anonymous housing worker writes in The Guardian


Each 'investment opportunity' means a life of insecurity for the tenants I help


An anonymous housing worker writes in Guardian Housing network that each 'investment opportunity' means


Resolving Dispute 'Too Much Work for HR' - HCA Staff Told!

Members of Unite, Unison and the PCS protested outside the April HCA Board meeting hours after receiving a letter from the Interim Chief Executive, Mark Hodgkinson, telling them that their pay grievance could not be addressed as it would involve too much work for HR.



Reach Out Recovery: Reinstate Alison

Victimisation at Reach Out Recovery


Alison Morris, Team Leader with years of exemplary experience in the field of substance misuse treatment, was summarily dismissed from her job at Reach Out Recovery on 11th April 201


The Housing Bill has got to be killed

We must restore decent, affordable council housing to the mainstream, return housing associations to their social purpose, control rents and demand secure homes for all, says GLYN ROBBINS

This week my union, Unite, described the


Support the Junior Doctors March Tuesday April 26th

Junior Doctors appeal: 'stand with us'


Our branch banner will be on the march - come and join us.


On 26/27 April, junior doctors will be striking again to stop the government imposing


The Guardian on Catalyst: Half the staff, but double the work

Catalyst housing association has a bigger net surplus than Greggs or Foxtons, so why are staff facing job losses and unmanageable workloads?


Industrial Action at Catalyst Housing

Plan to halve the number of neighbourhood managers


Catalyst Housing plan to halve the number of Neighbourhood Managers it employs.  Unite members at Catalyst say this will result in a drastic decline in service.&n


Unite fighting tax scam in construction

Construction bosses in ‘tax scam’ warning amid calls for HMRC to investigate


Bosses at Crossrail and some of the UK’s biggest construction firms are being warned against engaging in a ‘scam&rsqu


New survey: unmanageable workloads in housing

The Guardian: “Housing staff face 'unmanageable' workloads – poll”


In a new VIEW

HCA Strike Ballot Dates Confirmed

Unite has confirmed the dates of its ballot for industrial action at the Homes and Communities Agency. The official Notice of Intention to Ballot was sent to the employer on Monday 11th April and it will run until mid-day on the 2nd May. If the ballot is returned in favour of industrial acti


New mega merger: L&Q, Hyde and East Thames

Fourth biggest house builder


This morning L&Q, Hyde and East Thames housing associations announced merger plans that would create the biggest housing association in the UK, one of the biggest social landlords in Eu


Bromley ‘in dock’ over victimisation of Unite branch secretary


"...Unite said that these allegations have to be seen in the context that the council is fully committed to becoming a commissioning council and reducing the number of council employees from 4,000 to 300 – despite having £320 million in reserves...."


Health, Homes, Jobs Education! March and Rally

Save the date, book your seat for the march and rally


Saturday 16 April 2016 - London


March with the People’s Assembly on Saturday 16 April in London. Join us to demand #End


Unite at HCA Urges Talks as Strike Ballot Looms

Unite, the largest union at the HCA, has written to the Interim-Interim Chief Executive and Chair of the Board to urge last minutes talks to avert a strike ballot. 


The membership of Unite at the HCA voted 90% to reject the current pay offer on a turnout


OHG staff 3% pay claim

One Housing Group Unite members call for 3% pay increase


Last week The Times listed One Housing Group (OHG) boss Mick Sween


Butterfields Won't Budge!

"We Won't Budge" is the courageous slogan of a group of tenants who live in Walthamstow, east London and who aim to resist eviction from their homes, and the break up of their community.


The properties they live in were previously


New report: impact of rising rent & deposits

Need 266% pay increase
If you are young and think you're going to buy a house any time soon, thi


Construction unions disgusted by

Covers pay and conditions of around 500,000 construction workers


Unions representing workers employed under the largest collective agreement in the construction industry have described the employer’s paltry pay o


Who Tracks the Trackers?

Is monitoring and surveillance getting out of control at work? This question is beginning to concern an increasing number of our members. We are told that surveillance systems at work and in society are there to safeguard staff, clients, and the wider community, but they increasing


Jeremy Corbyn to join housing march Sunday 13th March

Thousands of people from across the country will march


Jeremy Corbyn


Housing associations: record surpluses again this year

Largest associations record £3 billion surplus – up a quarter


England’s largest housing associations recorded a record £3 billion combined surplus today as revealed on the Homes and Community Ag


Construction training cut

Training cutbacks will hit construction industry plagued by skills’ shortages


Serious questions have been raised about the future of training in the construction industry, already plagued with skills’ short


HCA - Pay Up!

"Our pay rise is now eight months overdue ... and so are our members bills!"


Unite members at the The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) made their feelings clear during a "Pay Day Protest" on the 15th February. They are angry at the length of time


Day of Action against Sports Direct February 13th

Unite will demonstrate outside Sports Direct high street stores as part of a second national day of action on 13 February against Sports Direct’s shameful work practices. Why not join in?


On this day of action we demand that Sports Direct:


Islington campaign against housing bill launched


Over 100 people crammed into room 5 of Islington Town Hall and voted unanimously to form a borough-wide campaign to oppose the Housing and Planning Bill. 



The meeting was organised by Islington Hands Off Our Public Services (IHOOPS


Housing bill in the news - come to the branch to discuss

‘Pay to stay’ trap will force working families out of council homes



Today’s from page splash on VIEW

Unite Protest Over Pay at HCA

Unite members, acting jointly with the PCS and UNISON, are discussing what action they can take in protest at an eight month delay to their pay settlement at the The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA). 


The HCA, which is sponsored by the Department for Communi


Benefit caps for social housing delayed

Future remains uncertain


Plans to cap housing benefits for social housing tenants in line with private sector have been deferred for a year until a review is completed.  The move means a partial reprieve for the s


Threat to council housing featured in local press

Branch member Glyn Robbins featured in this article from the Islington Tribune.  Let us know of any press coverage you get in the battle against the houisng bill.



Unite Stronger at Equinox!

Unite LE1111 branch representatives at social care provider Equinox have considerably strengthened their capacity. Two new representatives have stepped forward, membership is growing and through the union they have made important improvements to restructuring proposals. 



"Climate of fear" in Gloucestershire sheltered housing scheme


‘Climate of fear’ for elderly over future of Gloucestershire sheltered housing, says Unite


Strike brings gains at big north east housing association


Union members at Thirteen Group accepted a management offer this week following a bitter industrial dispute involving strike action.  Over time, Unit


New survey: CEOs get more inflation busting pay hikes

CEO pay up 3.2% in England

UK housing association chief executives took an inflation beating average increase to their pay of 3.1% in 2014/15 while the two highest-paid chief executives in the sector both saw pay increase


Trade Union Bill 'Worryingly Authoritarian'

Bob Kerslake, writing in the Guardian, has declared that the Trade Union Bill exposes this Government's 'worryingly authoritarian streak'  - damning words indeed from Kerslake, who has held several high profile local and civil service positions and is cur


Unite in local government calls for 'no cuts' budgets


Use council reserves


Last week the national committee for local government (NISC) of Unite called on Labour councils to set ‘no cuts’ budgets.  This is an important development buildin


Housing association worker suffers life changing injury

Broken bones


A Manchester housing association has been hit with a £200,000 bill after a worker had to have a finger and thumb amputated after his hand was mangled by a mower.


Special Branch Meeting - Trade Union Momentum

We start this year with an exciting special meeting discussing ‘Trade Union Momentum’ – a group helping to develop Jeremy Corbyn’s anti-austerity movement. John McI


Secure tenancies to be scraped



Nail in the coffin of social housing




Calais: Humanitarian crisis on our doorstep

No human is illegal


‘...It is impossible not to empathise with the refugees in Calais.  What we saw were thousands of young men, women and children attempting to survive in desperately unsafe and inhumane co


Pay dispute at Thirteen Group

Pay dispute at north east’s biggest housing association group triggers industrial action



Repairs and maintenance to homes managed by Thirteen, the largest group of housing associations in the nor


Letter on increasing commercialisation of homeless agencies

Letter to Labour Campaign to End Homelessness


The campaign have a launch meeting at our union head office with an invited speaker from the executive of St Mungos Broadway.  Unite members in the sector have asked o


Osborne eyes privatisation of stake in social housing

Osborne eyes privatisation of stake in social housing the splash headline in today’s Financial Times.  We have warned repeatedly of such a move. Unite housing workers will link with tenants and housin


Big housing associations: surpluses up again

The largest 75 housing associations in England boosted their combined surplus to £2.2bn this year according to a new survey in Inside Housing (pay wall). 


Pay jobs and services under attack in Circle Housing

Circle CEO Mark Rogers


Circle Housing: redundancies, pay cuts and lower quality services




Stress awareness day


In 2014/15 around 234,000 people reported that their stress, depression and anxiety was caused or made worse by their work. We need to take action!


It’s the 17th National Stress Awareness day on 4 November 2015 and Unite is aware that


Demanding Social Housing Not Social Cleansing!

We joined ASH (Architects for Social Housing) for a protest outside the Royal Institute of British Architects’ annual Stirlin


Branch Solidarity With Turkish Peace Protestors

On the 10th October, a peaceful rally for democracy in Turkey was shattered by two suicide bombs. At the time of posting, 97 people had been reported dead


Unite condemns Tory attacks on the low paid & social housing

Unite has issued this press statement today:


David Cameron’s legacy will be ‘all too visible to low paid workers’, says Unite


David Cameron’s


Architects Protest Over Social Housing Destruction

A group of architects are set to protest over the destruction of social housing and its replacement by "multi-million-pound luxury apartments and penthouses for nom-domiciled tax exiles and forei


HCA Budget Cuts - Unite Prepares to Resist!

The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) has been asked by its sponsor department (Communities and Local Government, CLG) to model cuts of 25% and 40% of operating costs to meet the cuts announced as part of the Comprehensive Spending Review 2015. The CLG itself has already announced that a 'Vo


Housing Associations could implement right to buy 'voluntarily'

Housing Associations told to agree right to buy extension within six working days 'volunatrily'


Housing minister Greg Clarke has made housing associations an offer they cannot refuse: they have to ‘volunt


Trade Union bill threatens health & safety

Government threat to safety reps – get the message out there!


Cross posted from the TUC 'Stronger Unions' blog by Hugh Robertson


The TUC is running a major camp


Think tank raises threat of housing association privatisation

Policy Exchange raise threat of outright privatisation of Housing Associations


Privatising housing associations would be “the most obvious” government reaction to £60bn of debt being added to the nati


Video: Branch joins #killthebill lobby with Suzanne speaking


A branch delegation to last weeks lobby of the TUC organised by the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) heard our branch secretary Suzanne speak from the pl


Inflation busting increases for housing Chief Executives

Inside Housing reveals housing boss’s pay


In the biggest hundred housing associations, chief executive total pay (includes basic pay, bonus and car allowance) 5.5% to £182,780.  Bonuses for chiefs of the biggest 100 ho


Housing Assembley South Africa - video

Inspiring video on South African Housing Assembly


A couple of months ago I was privileged to meet two South Africa housing activists on a UK tour organised by ‘War on Want.’


New reports show further social cleansing nightmare ahead

Perfect storm in housing: two new reports


A new report from Savills (see Inside Housing today) illustrates the mortal threat t


Aspire Housing workers strike to defend pay and conditions

Aspire Housing workers are taking a further twenty four hours strike action on September 1st.  Members of Unite, UCATT and the GMB are taking action to defend their pay and conditions.  Management have refused to negotiate or take the issues to ACAS for conciliation.



Organiser Recruitment: Update for Members

A statement by Branch Committee member, Jon Hughes


Dear members


I am writing with an update on the recruitment of the part-time Organiser. The role was proposed by the Branch Committee and overwhelmingly supported by


Corbyn poll lead - break with austerity in housing

Today’s news that almost four in ten homes sold through ‘right to buy’ are now in the private rented sector (Inside Housing this week here


Bromley Unite refuse collectors to strike

'Stinking dustbins’ for Bromley residents, as refuse collectors set to strike


Bromley residents face the prospect of uncollected rubbish as about 100 refuse collection staff employed by waste disposal giant V


Guidance on Equality Law

Having dealt with nearly 50,000 calls on discrimination last year, Acas has launched three, free equality guides to help employers and managers get to grips with the law on equality.



Another association moving away from social housing

Aster joins Genesis and Hyde in considering pulling out of social housing


A large social housing association is considering transforming into a ‘mainstream house builder’ by following Genesis in ending deve


Jeremy Corbyn launches housing policy

Jeremy Corbyn’s plan for council house building


Labour leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn MP published his plans to address Britain's housing crisis yesterday and they look very similar to the policies that o


Genesis manager quits following abandonment of social housing

The move by Genesis Housing Association to pull out of social and affordable housing (reported here) has provoked discussion. Today Inside Housing magazine has produced this letter of resignation from


Hard Day’s Night: TUC report calls for fair deal for night work

The work-life balance impacts of night working


A new report gives useful information for Unite reps on the housing sector.  The report concentrates on work – life balance; see VIEW

Genesis HA ceases social housing and OHG residents protest

This week one association withdrew from developing affordable or social housing and another was censured by residents and a local authority


Genesis Housing Association has announced it will stop building either &lsquo


Alarm bells ring over future of housing staff pensions

Unite has issued this statement today 30 July 2015


The increased contributions to the pension fund for social housing staff should not be used as an excuse for housing association bosses to provide inferior pension provision for employees.



Hands off our pensions - contribution increase announced

The Social Housing Pension Scheme (SHPS) has written to employers this week informing that they will be required to pay just under £32 million in increased contributions from next April. 


While housing association bosses have been increasing their pension pot


Housing Associations get media kicking

Housing Associations and their ‘bleating’ bosses are getting a media kicking today, with articles in the Times and the Spectator, and a feature on Channel Four tonight.  Mostly the attacks are from enemies of social housing seeking a smokescreen for the fact that government


New evidence: shift work makes you sick

What can we do about shift work?


Evidence of the damaging health effects of shift work continues to mount; it is clear that many shift workers in our branch will have increased risk of contracting cancer and suffer other health problems as a result of t


Companies scrap 'performance management' What about HA's?

Companies scrapping performance management


Accenture, the multinational IT and business strategy company is reported in the Washington Post to be ending its ‘performance management’ system.  From September this year they will join other


Bromley suspends Unite rep to silence anti privatisation fight


Bromley council accused of targeting union reps in bid to silence privatisation critics

Conservative-controlled Bromley council


Peabody Parent Sacks Board of Subsidiary CBHA!

The board of the giant Peabody Group last week sacked the resident board members of its subsidiary, CBHA; something that many consider a high-handed and unethical act at odds with the founding principles of the charitable Peabody Trust.


The resident board members formed


Second industrial action ballot at Look Ahead Care & Support

Hackney services balloted on pay


An earlier protest by Unite members in Look Ahead


A seco


Bromley eviction halted - case goes to court

Bromley eviction stopped: Battle of diabetic ‘facing £51,000 council tax bill’ now goes to court on 21 July


The case of a Bromley insulin dependent diabetic, who faces eviction after wrongly being charged a total of £51,000 for h


Unite opposes cruel eviction

Eviction threat to diabetic ‘facing £51,000 council tax bill is cruel’, says Unite


The attempted eviction of a Bromley insulin dependent diabetic, who looks after his severely disabled daughter and was wrongly charged a total of £


Open Event for Unite Members in the Not for Profit Sector

Are you a member of Unite working in in the voluntary or not for profit sector and in the London or the Eastern region?


If so, you are invited to join us for our open event as follows: 



Look Ahead staff in Brent ballot for possible strike

Branch members working for Look Ahead Care and Support in Brent are being balloted for possible strike action – papers will be sent out on Monday 10th July.


The ballot follows management’s failure to consult with Unite over a proposed restructure following a


Bromley Unite fighting back

Bromley council staff stage fourth wave of strikes in run-up to Westminster budget day demo against council cuts and ‘race to the bottom’


Bromley council’s plans to carry out a mass privatisation of services are again being challenged


Our Branch is Now Recruiting!

The Unite LE1111 Housing Workers Branch needs a part-time, self-employed Organiser to help us make an even greater impact on behalf of our members in the housing sector and beyond. The Organiser will help members and reps to encourage more militant and self-sufficient union organisation within th


More in the Guardian on pay as branch leaflets Peabody

Visitors to the Peabody staff conference on Wednesday were greeted by red Unite flags as CBHA tenants and branch members handed out leaflets. One leaflet outlined tenant concerns while another outlined Unite members' frustration over pay.  Staff echoed the pay concerns in the confer


The Guardian reveals Housing Association pay inequality

Today’s Guardian reports that Housing association chiefs earn up to 23 times more than rank and file staff  - see here


Jane Ashcroft


The Guardian reveals low pay by housing associations

The Guardian reports today on low pay and inequality in housing associations


Lowest-paid staff in social housing sector receive below the living wage, at an average of £7.69 per hour, while Housing association chiefs earn up to 23 times more than rank and file sta


CBHA Tenants Protest at Peabody

CBHA Tenants are to protest at the Peabody staff conference on Wednesday and have appealed for all to support for their lobby. The details are:


Wednesday 24th June
Park Plaza Hotel
200 Westminster Bridge


Haldane Calls International Conference on Legal Rights for Women

With the requirement to pay a fee in order to lodge a claim at employment Tribunal, and the cuts to Legal Aid which formerly helped the poorest and most vulnerable in society seek justice through the court system, access to justice has been moved beyond the grasp of many, and women in p


End Austerity Now! Demo - Branch Meeting Point

Please join our branch block at 11.45 outside Monument station, but at the Monument itself rather than the tube entrance. We will move off at around 12 noon to join the march, and will have our orange and black banner, so should be very visible! Please join us. 


Better Branch Resources - Staffing Update

We Are Now Ready to Hire a Branch Organiser - Thanks to Our Members!


Thank you to everyone who voted in the Branch Levy Survey. The results were overwhelmingly (79%) in favour of an increase to the levy of £1 per


Revealed: how stress takes it's toll on workers in the sector

The Guardian is featuring a new survey on the impact of stress on workers - it will be a talking point in the sector and Unite reps will seek to use these discussions as a basis for positive campaigns.


The survey finds "Long hours, a lack of breaks and a fraught wo


Keep volunteering voluntary!

The Keep Volunteering Voluntary Campaign was launched last year to highlight the value of volunteering, demonstrating that responsible voluntary organisations won't take part in workfare schemes.  Unite LE1111 housing branch negotiators are seeking to ensure that employers maintin good p


Pay Survey on its way to you

Discontent about pay has been growing in the housing sector and members of the Unite housing branch LE1111 are being surveyed about pay - let is know what you get and what you think! .. and dont forget to return the survey to us.  Click on 'Download' below to get a pdf of the survey.


Bromley: Third wave of strikes against privatisation

Strikes planned at Bromley council, as Tories ‘run amok’ over mass privatisation

01 June 2015

Bromley council’s plans to carry out a mass privatisation of services are being challenged by members of Unite, with a third wave of strikes.



Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers Endorses Our Manifesto!

The Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers had formally endorsed our Manifesto for Housing after Suzanne Muna, the Branch Secretary, attended one of Haldane's committee meetings and outlined the work of our branch. Suzanne spoke on the lack of housing supply, the increase in homelessness, our d


Pay Victory at Centrepoint

Unite members at Centrepoint are celebrating a successful pay negotiation which will give members an above-inflation increase after they rejected the original offer from management. Centrepoint, despite publishing a very healthy surplus in their 2013/14 financial statement, offered just 1.5% to m


Fill in this survey: have you been verbally abused or assaulted?

Have you been verbally abused or physically assaulted on the job?


If so fill in this anonymous survey being run by Inside Housing magazine here


As we reported on t


South Africa report - at our branch meeting

Unite links with workers struggles over the world.  Recently, London Unite member Bronwen Handyside visited South Africa as part of a Unite delegation.


The terrible events of the Marikana maasacre and the increasingly pro big business policies of the ANC and unions


Offering Unite a Political Choice - Support Our Motion!

The Unite Housing Workers Branch wants to give Unite greater political choice. Currently Unite is affiliated to the Labour Party. As well as helping to fund Labour, this means that we are only allowed to support Labour Party candidates in council, general, or European elections. This sup


Epilepsy in the workplace - New guide for reps

Epilepsy in the workplace – a TUC guide, to aid trade union workplace representatives in supporting members with epilepsy has bee published this week.

The guide was written for the TUC by Epilepsy Action and is based on the social model of disability, which means epilepsy


National Minimum Wage Campaign

The April branch meeting was proud to support the £10 Now! campaign for a £10 per hour National Minimum Wage. This campaign is being led by the bakers' union (BFAWU), but low wages are a big issue in our sector, despite the high surpluses amassed by housing associations. The


Bangladeshi Garment Workers Fight On

On the 7th April, Unite's community centre at Cable Street hosted a visit by a representative of the Bangladeshi Garment Workers Federation (BGWF), which is continuing to fight for the rights of garment workers after the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory killed more than a thousand work


All Together Now: Hands Off CBHA!

The heavens opened, but tenants and staff weren't deterred. They had a message to deliver to Peabody management: Hands Off CBHA!


The tenants, staff, and supporters from the Unite Housing Workers Branch were protesting at a Peabody roadshow (complete with 'Digi-V


New Resources from ACAS

See the links below to some great free resources from ACAS, and to specialist training courses.


Pressure the Politicians - A Manifesto for Housing!

We demand that MPs and councillors move to end the housing crisis by way of the measures set out by the Unite Housing worker's Manifesto.


Please sign our petition VIEW | DOWNLOAD

New TUC report on mental health in the workplace

The prevalence of mental health problems among Britain’s workers is being exacerbated by reductions in the funding of mental health services, the TUC has warned. It added that official statistics “confirm a clear link with conditions such as stress generated at work that lead to menta


All Change at CBHA?

Unite members at CBHA (formerly Community Based Housing Association) are about to be consulted over major changes that the parent association, Peabody, wishes to make to the way the organisation is run.


The staff at the small association which operates exclusively in Wa


London NHS moves in to intensive care

London NHS’s crisis has deepened and moved into ‘intensive care’, according to a Unite report – launched today – which investigates the capital’s health service over the last 12 months -  has concluded.  Click VIEW

Pension scheme deficit announced

We have warned of the possibility that employers in the housing sector will attempt to worsen our pension in a number of recent reports on this website.  Inside Housing last week reported that the deficit on the Social Housing Pension Scheme (SHPS) fund has been announced as £1.32 bill


Housing Associations Surplus - £2.4 billion this year

Housing Associations – another record suplus


The newly published global accounts of the sector for 2013/14 show an aggregate surplus of some £2.4bn.  Surpluses have risen over the last three: £1.1bn, 1.8bn and £1.9bn according to the HCA (Ho


Family Mosaic Exposed!

On Tuesday 17th March 2000 people attended the Homes for Britain rally. Their message was simple:


'Our campaign brings together all those who believe everyone has a right to a decent affordable home to call their own.


Thursday is No Sanctions day

Unite holds day of action calling for end to ‘grotesque cruelty’ of benefit sanctions

On Thursday 19th March Unite will demonstrate outside the Department for Work and Pensions in London as part of a national day of action opposing benefit sanctions


Pensions: Freedom and Choice………………and Danger

Access to pensions after April 2015

From 6th April 2015 the tax rules governing how you can access DC (defined contribution) pension savings are changing to give much more flexibility.


While the flexibility to do what you


Unite Protest at Family Mosaic Staff Evictions

The First Steps Homes Show on the 14th March was described as "an opportunity to meet the experts and providers of low-cost home ownership schemes in one place". As visitors queued on a cold, grey morning amid heavy security, they were met by Unite Housing Workers Branch


Race to the bottom scandals in the news

Race to the bottom: MiHomecare exposed as paying less than the minimum wage and Your Care Barnet rated ‘inadequate’.


Care provider MiHomecare is in the news today as paying less than the minimum wage. Corporate Watch have obtained a revealing internal report


Police Spying : Public Inquiry Announced

Important news of a public inquirey into undercover policing.

Public inquirey into 'undercover policing' - "must be truly transparent, robust and independent." Should cover police role in blacklisting too.



Statement from COPS


Legal Aid Cuts a 'False Economy'

Legal aid cuts are a ‘false economy’ denying justice to 620,000 people


More than 620,000 people, 80% of whom are the most disadvantaged in society, have been denied access to justice because of the coalition’s so-called ‘reforms&


No Vote No Voice campaign

Unite has launched a campaign - #novotenovoice - to get one million people registered to vote in the Mat 7th election.  A red bus is criss crossong the country to highlight the issue.


New registration arrangements are meaning people are dropping off registers; grou


Sanctury to consider leaving SHPS pension scheme

Sactuary Housing, the UK's largest landlord are considering leaving SHPS - the Social Housing Pension Scheme according to a report in today's Inside Housing, see here


In-Work Benefits Under Threat

Universal Credit has been a shambles logistically with no one knowing when different stages and aspects of implementation will happen; even when dates are announced for roll-out it has been partly a reputational exercise for Ian Duncan Smith and less to do with reality. As part of the Unite Commu


One Housing Group Member Meetings

A regular member meeting slot has now been set up for One Housing Group members for the first Tuesday of every month. This gives members the opportunity to talk to the branch committee about the many issues we have heard about, and to agree the collective response. Please come along to the next m


Family Mosaic - Members Unite for Better Working Condtions

Our members at Family Mosaic have alerted us to a number of workplace issues which need to be discussed so that we can decide how to collectively improve working conditions. If you are a Unite member at Family Mosaic, or are not a member but considering joining, please do come along to


Our manifesto for housing

We work in housing and homelessness organisations so we see the impact of the housing crisis in our working lives.  We have to find places to live ourselves so we are also hit directly by the crisis ourselves.  Click on the download button below to see the short ‘manifesto’


Unite joins week of action to save council housing

Save council housing from London's mayor

Unite, is backing a week of action across the capital designed to stop the further destruction of London's council housing stock.


With housing now the third most important issue for voters in London, yet housi


Britain needs a pay rise - so we need strong unions!

Strong trade unions not empty rhetoric the way to give Britain a pay rise, says McCluskey

Strong trade unions, not empty attempts to curry favour, is the way to giv


Social housing pension scheme - defend it!

There are plans to change the biggest pension scheme in our sector in ways which would reduce benefits to our members. It is important that Unite reps raise this issue with management and consult Unite members in any workplace with members of SHPS - the Social Houisng Pension Scheme. 


New survey highlights housing staff discontent over pay

Nearly 60% of housing workers are dissatisfied with their pay according to a survey conducted by Inside Housing and Hays Social Housing – a consultancy used by many employers in the sector.


Only around 10% of employers said they had awarded better than cost of liv


Block the Budget: End the Housing Crisis

Mayor Boris Johnson is the most powerful politician in London when it comes to decisions about housing, with control over a £1.8bn budget for delivering new homes and hundreds of hectares of public land. His budget goes to the vote on 23 February and if passed, will mean more sky-high


Time to Stop the Oligarch Cranes

By London & Eastern Regional Committee Chair, Jim Kelly


On Saturday 31 January, on a cold wet windy winter day, another protest march against the madness of London’s housing market took place, building on the protests against the International Housing Fai


Services for Members - Personal Injury Claims

Unite recommends that you pursue any personal injury claim you may have through the Union's solicitors. This is the only way you will be guaranteed to keep 100% of your compensation


An injury or illness can have a devastating impact, many years after they occur.&nbs


Long hours damage health - new research

New research underlines the health risks of working long hours.  An international study released last week has identified that those who work more than 48 hours a week are 11% more likely to drink alcohol at risk levels than those working a standard week – see VIEW

Action to stop sanctions against claimants

Unite will kick start a nationwide campaign on Wednesday 4 February against benefit sanctions which are pushing people into poverty and punishing debt.

The campaign, to stop benefit sanctions, will be launched on the same day that the House of Commons work and pensions committee qu


March for Homes - A Great Start to Fighting the Housing Crisis!

The Unite Housing Workers Branch was proud to play a part in organising the March for Homes which marched to City Hall demanding rent controls, more council housing, an end to the demolition of quality council homes, the provision of affordable and secure homes for all, c


Bromley: Stop attacks on Unite

Bromley council attacks Unite

Bromley: Stop attacking union members rights

Just as unions warn that Bromley Council is set to unveil plans for some of the biggest cuts in its history, the Tory Council has announced plans to immediately cease trade union 'f


Threat to decent pensions in housing

In recent years there has been a trend for pension benefits to be reduced in the social housing sector.  As the Social Housing Pension Scheme (SHPS), the largest scheme in the sector prepares to announce its latest deficit, Inside Housing reports that this will increase the likelihood of emp


Branch secretary Suz Muna seeks nominations in Unite election

Our branch secreatary Suzanne Muna is seeking nominations for a vacant seat on Unites executive as we reported here

Click on 'download' to see a leaflet produced by supporters.



Charities Gagged Over Poverty in Britain

Campaign group Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) has highlighted a new report which shows that charities are being gagged by public sector funders who wish to prevent them from speaking out publicly against poverty and the effects of austerity cuts in Britain.




NHS workers deserve a pay rise

Unite members in the health service will be taking part in further strike action.  Unite LE1111 housing workers branch secretary Suzanne Muna commented: “My full support goes out to NHS workers due to strike on the 29th of January. See the unite link and do all you can to support the a


Unite launches asbestos awareness campaign

The risk from asbestos is a serious concern for anyone working in housing and contruction. Unite is launching an asbestos awareness campaign to highlught the risks from this silent killer.  There is an informative an informative online campaign pack to arm Unite reps and members.



Fighting and winning pay claims

Unite housing workers branch secretary Suzanne Muna has written an important article on fighting and winning pay claims drawing on our experience in the branch.  She points out that many battles in the branch have been about management attempts to cut the pay of front line workers.  Mea


Get ready for 'Work Your Proper Hours Day': Friday 27 February

Work Your Proper Hours Day (27 Feb 2015) is the day when the average person who does unpaid overtime finishes the unpaid days they do every year, and starts earning for themselves. We think that's a day worth celebrating.

Our survey of Unite housing branch members


Unite - fighting the housing crisis

Our union’s policies on housing look very different from any of the big parties. There is work to be done.


Unite decides policy through a democratic conference; branches like ours submit resolutions and elected delegates vote on them.  The policies cover work


London backs bus strike

Research shows overwheming public support in London for the drivers case.


Our branch has sent its solidarity to fellow Unite members on London busses striking on Tuesday 13 January.  They are fighting against low pay and for sector wide negotiation – both thi


Stop Housing Association Privatisation

“Housing associations will be set free to roam as private companies. There is no doubt in my mind about this.... This is a juicy steak one millimetre away from a slavering dog’s mouth.  I am of course putting aside the morality.  But money is talking.  And the politicia


Branch Secretary in Unite EC Election Race!

Following the resignation of Lizanne Malone, there is a vacancy on the Executive Council for the London & Eastern territorial seat. Our Branch Secretary, Suzanne Muna, has agreed to seek nominations to become a candidate.


Suzanne said:




Support Striking Bus Workers!

Unite has announced that up to 27,000 bus workers will be taking part in a London wide bus strike on Tuesday 13 January. The 24 hour stoppage follows the continued refusal by London’s 18 bus operators to enter into talks about a single London wide agreement covering bus workers’


Unite Wins Recognition at Look Ahead

Unite members at Look Ahead, led by representative Dom Rollin, have won recognition for Unite at Look Ahead's four Hackney projects. This is a significant victory and was conceded by management following the threat of industrial action. As reported previously, the seven-day strike threat also


Shelter: Strike suspended

Strikes this week have been suspended following new proposals negotiated today. Members to vote on this. Strikes from 12th January still on pending members vote.



Housing Associations to become more profitable again next year

English housing associations are set to continue their path of increasing profitability according to Moody’s – the credit rating agency in a report issued this week.


The sector has repeatedly booked record surpluses in recent years, and Moody’s expect


New TUC guides on the new maternity and paternity rules

Figuring out how to share maternity leave and pay has been made easier with the publication of two new booklets from the TUC. Well worth any Unite rep reading.


The booklets – Leave and Pay for Mothers and Leave and Pay for Fathers and Partner


Shelter - three day strike over pay cuts

The housing charity Shelter is set to be hit by a three day strike next week as Britain’s largest union, Unite announced that 400 of its members would be walking out from Tuesday 16 December over pay cuts of up to £5,000 for frontline staff. 

Amid warnings that ‘c


New Standards for the sector

Unite's national website reports: Our campaign recognises that the competitive tendering process by which social care, social housing, and support service providers bid for contracts, is damaging standards in our sectors and is leading to an environment in which low cost offers can triumph ov


Action Against 'Cold Home Deaths' - 28th November

Next Friday 28th November we find out how many people died from the impacts of living in a cold home last winter. Join Fuel Poverty Action and Reclaim the Power to take action and demand 'No More Deaths from Fuel Poverty: Energy Rights Now!’

In 2012/2013 10,000 people died fro


Why workers at Shelter are balloting for industrial action

Shelter helps millions of people every year struggling with bad housing or homelessness and we campaign to prevent it in the first place.


Everyone working for Shelter cares passionately about these issues. We are totally committed to the work we do and that is why we ha


St Mungo's Broadway victory - fantastic new Reel News video

A spectacular victory - and a potentially very significant one - for St. Mungo's Broadway housing workers, just as they were about to embark on 10 straight days of strike action. Management were forced into conceding virtually all the strikers demands and abandoning their plans to savagely cu


St Mungo's Broadway strike called off after management climbdown

Hundreds of strikers gathered for a victory rally outside the St Mungos Broadway head office this morning. Len Mcluskey described the strike as pivotal when he spoke to Unite members earlier in the dispute - today speakers spoke of the signifi


St Mungos Broadway Strike Off! We Win! And Victory Rally Details

Following a day locked in talks at ACAS, the Unite SMB reps and Regional Officer, Nicky consider that they have received an offer from SMB management


St Mungos Broadway strike - talks at ACAS today

Adam Lambert, Nicky Marcus and Jon Hughes will be attending talks at ACAS with representatives from the executive team of St Mungo’s Broadway this morning.  They will update via twitter and updates wil