Sunday, July 06, 2014

Why next week’s strike matters to Housing Association workers

This is from our branch newsletter which calls for our members to support the strike on Thursday. 

"On Saturday 5 July UNISON and other Health unions will be holding a day of action over low pay. While on Thursday 10 July there will be Strike Action by UNISON and other Council and teaching unions.

Although the vast majority of Housing Association members’ pay is not directly affected by these disputes, this is our fight as well. In our sector, many have also endured years of wage freezes or below inflation pay "rises".

I suspect that the average housing management worker is in real terms around a 5th poorer than they were in 2009. That means you can now buy 20% less with your pay than in the past.

Even worse, those in Care & Support have seen radical pay cuts in basic pay and suffered minimum wage rates and cuts to overtime and weekend working. We must never forget that these pay cuts were the result of a worldwide recession caused by greedy and dishonest bankers - not front line customer service staff, cleaners and care assistants.

It matters to all of us because we need to make low pay and our cost of living crisis a key political issue in the run up to the General Election next year. Effective, organised and well targeted and publicised industrial action can help make this happen.

So let us all do what we can to support our UNISON comrades taking action on July 5th and July 10th. Tell your friends and family about why they are striking and how all of us are worth a pay rise. See you on the picket line!

John Gray, Branch Secretary"
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