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 of 80%. Since receiving this news, the Agency has refused either to negotiate or to enter talks with ACAS in order to resolve the impasse. Now the Agency is threatening to impose the pay offer which would represent a further breach of their Recognition Agreement. If it does so, Unite has warned that it will have no alternative but to move immediately toward a walkout of the membership, as happened in 2014.
Unite members at the HCA last took strike action over pay in 2014. There is now an increasing likelihood of a second strike.
The Agency is currently going through a change of leadership which has made negotiations even more tricky than usual. The CEO left on Thursday 24th March but there has not yet been an appointment for a new Interim CEO. The Agency has therefore promoted a Director to carry out the role of Interim-Interim until a more permanent but nonetheless short-term appointment is in place. Unite members have expressed concerns that there is no senior member of staff available to help resolve the rapidly growing dispute.
The HCA faces a period of unprecedented change, with new demands being established through changes to rent setting legislation for associations, the provisions of the Housing and Planning Bill which are still unclear, and the Triennial Review - a government scrutiny panel to consider how well the HCA delivers its functions, and whether structural changes are needed.
Unite has been steadily increasing in numbers at the Agency. If you are an employee and would like to join, please contact one of the Unite representatives via email@example.com.