Seven-day strike could delay hundreds of London housing repair works


Thousands of homes across the capital could be impacted after fresh strikes were announced by repair and maintenance workers.

Hundreds of Hackney-based workers from Sanctuary Housing will strike in April over an ongoing pay dispute.

The dispute stems from a 4 per cent pay increase in April 2023, which fell short of the 11.4 per cent RPI inflation rate – meaning the workers received a significant pay cut in real terms.

Union leaders have warned that the pay dispute will "continue to escalate" if the housing association does not address workers' demands.

Unite, which is organising the strike, claims that Sanctuary Housing currently does not recognise the workers' union and has not participated in pay negotiations.

The Hackney-based workers carry out repair and maintenance work for thousands of homes around the capital, including nearby at the huge Gascoyne, Kingsmead and Morningside estates.

Fresh strike action will take place on 12, 15, 17, 19, 22, 24 and 26 April. It will impact hundreds ofscheduled repair and maintenance jobs for Sanctuary Housing’s London clients.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: Sanctuary talks a good game about being not for profit but behaves like a corporate shark: It rakes in millions, pays its CEO an obscene salary, has workers using foodbanks and refuses to recognise unions.

“Sanctuary can more than afford to give our members a fair pay deal. The workers have Unite’s full support in striking for as long as it takes.

Unite regional officer Matt Freeman said: Sanctuary Housing is responsible for instigating this dispute and owes its tenants an apology for compelling its workers to resort to strike action. Sanctuary's leadership must return with a satisfactory offer, as the ongoing industrial action will only escalate until a resolution isreached.”

A spokesperson for Sanctuary said: "We are actively engaging with the small number of colleagues who have raised concerns and remain committed to minimising disruption to our customers.”