Strike called off as Shelter employees accept 4% pay increase


Employees of housing and homeless charity Shelter have called off strike action scheduled to start today (11 December 2018) after accepting an improved pay offer of 4%.

The 72-hour strike was originally called by more than 400 workers, members of the trade union Unite, after rejecting an offer of 1%. This offer comprised a 1% pay increase, plus a non-consolidated, one-off payment of 1%.

According to Unite, the organisation’s 1,300-strong workforce has experienced a real-terms pay cut of 11% since 2010, due to a series of below-inflation pay increases.

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Peter Storey, regional officer at Unite, said: “Our members are not greedy. They are not looking to get richer, they are just trying to keep their heads above water.

“Unite’s members at Shelter have faced a year-on-year pay squeeze since the beginning of the decade. It is entirely unfair that the wages of Shelter workers have been declining at the same time that the charity’s reserves have been increasing.”

The latest offer was made after Unite and Shelter’s management held extended negotiations through the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) on 7 December in an attempt to avoid the planned strike. The workers overwhelmingly accepted the offer, according to the union.

The pay increase is structured as 2.25% consolidated, plus 1.75% unconsolidated paid at a flat rate, to the value of approximately £500 for each member of staff.

Storey said: “This is an excellent result that has been achieved by the tremendous solidarity and determination of our members. Thankfully, Shelter’s management came to their senses and made a realistic offer.

“Hopefully, the improved pay offer will result in improved industrial relations at Shelter and we can build on this pay increase to end the low-pay culture currently experienced by the charity’s staff.”

Shelter was unavailable for comment at the time of publication.