Branch Secretary :

One Housing Group – further pay rise agreed

Strike threat


When One Housing Group (OHG) offered a 3.1% pay rise earlier this year Unite rejected this proposal outright because it was inadequate in the face of the current Cost of Living Crisis.


Unite have been continuing to argue for a higher increase in our meeting with management. OHG recently merged with Riverside Housing where Unite is the recognised union and Unite has also been doing the same there. In Riverside our Unite brothers and sisters threatened strike action unless the offer was improved.


OHG could afford increase


Therefore, we are pleased to see that OHG have now advised that pay for all staff earning less than £49,200 will get a further 1.5% pay rise from October 2022.  This brings this year’s pay settlement to 4.6% for over 85% of OHG. This is both a reaction to OHG's inability to hold on to staff coupled with pressure from Unite.


One Housing Group Unite members in 2013


Importantly this supports what Unite maintained at the outset, namely that OHG could afford to increase their initial offer. OHG has assets valued at £2bn and could easily have afforded to pay more. Despite pleading poverty when it comes to awarding pay offers, they are very fond of boasting how healthy their business is when it comes to publishing their financial statement. In their last statement they claimed that "One Housing business model remains strong"! 


Below inflation


Whilst we recognise that this increased pay offer is still well below inflation, but this is nevertheless a clear victory for Unite who have been the only union that have consistently pushed and argued for a higher increase this year. Had it not been for Unite's determined approach across both Riverside and OHG this further increase would not have been awarded. This should provide a lesson for the coming year when pay will also be a burning issue for low paid staff. 


It is important that we continue to grow Unite in OHG so that we can continue to put pressure on OHG to recognise that poverty wages lead to worse outcomes for employees, customers and even OHG as workers are forced to leave in the hunt for better pay.


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Nick Auvache  27 July 2022


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