Branch Secretary :

More concern at St Mungos 'eroding' workers organisation

Engaging expensive consultancy


News that St Mungo’s Chief Executive Howard Sinclair has been corresponding with an expensive consultancy about how to stop people joining the union and ‘erode [its] support’ has caused widespread concern. Both the aim of eroding the independent voice of St Mungo’s staff, and the expense of engaging an expensive consultancy to achieve that aim are clearly inappropriate.


Union busting


Staff are now being told about a ‘new’ staff advisory group. They have failed to raise this with their recognised union. This has the mark of a classic union busting initiative. Was this idea dreamed up by expensive consultants? Why was the union not even consulted? Certainly this is not a concilatory move by management!


In response to tweets linking to this website from the branch twitter feed St Mungo’s responded saying they were not anti-union but failing to address the evidence. Twitter responses included the suggestion that they would be better talking directly to the union, concern at managements approach to the union and challenges to the use of the organisations money to employ a consultant to assist with eroding the union’s support. Many of these voices were councillors in local authorities that currently fund St Mungo’s.



The Islington cabinet member for housing, Cllr Diarmuid Ward, has met with St Mungo’s to raise concerns and Lewisham’s cabinet member for housing Cllr Paul Bell has written to St Mungo’s. Cllr Ward expresses particular concern at the use of funds on consultants aimed at undermining the union.  


Staff in St Mungos have asked us to convey their thanks to all who have raised concern.




Unfortunately the path that St Mungos management has taken in recent years has been the cause for deep concern in the organisation and accross the sector. The tribunal finding in favour of a staff member who was victimised for raising equality issues gives just a glimpse of the culture at the top of the organisation. The same HR director remains in post. Staff also remain concerned at managements role in the unlawful deportation of EU rough sleepers and sharing confidential client information.


St Mungos staff remain proud of the difficult work they do helping some of the most vulnerable people in society. It is time that they had a leadership who shared their priorities and listened to them.


Follow the branch twitter feed: @UniteHousing


Paul Kershaw, Chair Unite housing workers.



St Mungos members are currently being balloted. The ballot closes on Monday february 2nd. Not received your ballot paper? Please email


St Mungos reps explain why they are voting yes here.


January 24th 2020




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