Branch Secretary :

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 pay survey published today.  The top 10 highest paid CEOs had on average nearly 10% higher salaries compared to the 10 highest paid in the previous year’s survey. 


Associations have been using the government enforced 1% cut in social rents to justify reigning in staff pay and cutting services to tenants.  But this does doesn’t seem to be a problem when it comes to pay for top bosses!  It is worth remembering that associations continue to book record surpluses year after year. 


The Inside Housing poll of the 177 largest associations by stock owned shows average basic chief executive pay grew 3.3% year-on-year to £150,131 in 2015/16.  The average bonus rose 10.7% over the same period.  


Gender pay gap remains


The poll also shows the gender pay gap remains an issue in housing, with average male chief executive pay 7.2% higher than female pay. 


Places for People Chief Executive David Cowans tops the pay league getting a 9.8% increase to put him on £528,870.  Other top bonuses include David Montague at L&Q with £47,105 Keith Exford at Affinity Sutton with £39,613 and Mick Sweeney at One Housing Group who got £34,475.


Suzanne Muna, Unite LE1111 branch secretary and Unite executive member commented:


‘These figures will come as slap in the face to hard pressed housing staff. After years of pay ‘restraint’ in a sector that regularly books record surpluses our members our feeling the squeeze and are clearly not valued by employers in the sector. Unite members have mounted successful campaigns to defend pay and conditions in the sector and Unite will continue to support housing staff who want to fight back.’


Inside Housing warns of the damaging publicity these increases could attract to the sector quoting a number of commentators.  For example:


‘...James Tickell, managing director of consultancy Campbell Tickell, says there is a “huge unstated political pressure on the sector not to be seen to be pushing its luck”.’

He says at a time when the government has been critical of housing associations for paying their chief executives too much and not building enough new homes... ‘This really isn’t the time to be paying senior staff large increases’


Seen on twitter from ‘SP Eye Joe’ and others:


L&Q chief exec gets 32% pay rise to £355k The #DollisValley regen very profitable, eh.. Or maybe #CatHill


Any wonder @jeremycorbyn wants council not HA housing?  Tories will have a field day too!


Pay MORE to Stay so we can pay our CEO MORE?  Write your own headline #ukhousing @placeshapers @24dash @insidehousing


£500k+ salaries, 32% pay increases and social purpose?  I give you the charitable Housing Association!


Paul Kershaw


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