Dear Shelter Supporters,
As you may already know, Shelter works are returning to strike action this week.
Following our strike action in March, Shelter management agreed to return to talks at ACAS, where they made a revised offer to staff.
This offer, far from resolving the dispute, poured oil onto troubled waters. Further details can be found in the attached leaflet.
Union members were balloted on whether to accept or reject the offer. It was made very clear that in order to improve the package on the
table, further escalated strike action would be necessary. Members voted to do just that - escalate strike action.
Shelter workers will be on strike across England and Scotland on Thursday 24th and Friday 25th April.
We have timed our action on 24th to coincide with the NUT, PCS and UCU strikes on the same day. In many locations we will picket our Shelter offices and then join the demonstrations and rallies with our colleagues in the the other unions.
This is a significant week in our dispute at Shelter: the first batch of dismissal notices issued to staff opposing the cuts are due to expire today. Those staff members are being told if they want to continue in their jobs, they have to sign new contracts on inferior terms and conditions.
Please find attached details of our picket lines. Do come along and support us if you possibly can.
on behalf of Shelter stewards
Shelter dispute – Thursday 24th and Friday 25th April 2008
Shelter staff are taking a further strike action on Thursday and Friday this week.
There will be picket lines at the following locations.
Please come support us.
Shelter Head Office
88 Old St
London EC1V 9HU
At junction of Old St and Whitecross St
Thursday 24th - From 7.30am – 10.30am at Old St, then at 11am joining NUT/PCS/UCU march from Lincoln’s Inn Fields to Westminster Central Hall for rally.
Friday 25th – From 7.30am – 2pm at Old St
Yorkshire & North East Regional Office
Midlands & East Regional Office
50 – 53 High Street
From 8am – 10.15am and then again from 12 noon – 2pm
Manchester Housing Aid Centre and North West Regional Office
119 Princess Street
Head Office (Scotland)
6 South Charlotte Street
First Floor Suite 2
274 Sauchiehall Street
Here is what I put out a couple of weeks ago:
Dr. Derek Wall
Shelter strike gains Green Party support and backing
5th Mar 2008
The tendering of services via the market is a way of cutting wage costs and increasing poverty rather than increasing efficiency
Green Party Principal Speaker Dr. Derek Wall today pledged Green Party support for the workers of the housing charity Shelter, who are today taking industrial action after Shelter managers demanded staff work an extra two and a half hours a week without additional pay - lost income worth an average of £1,700 per person over a year.
Despite Shelter's 2007 annual report revealing an annual income of £49.1m, with staff costs of £27.7m,(1) the charity's Chief Executive Adam Sampson emailed Shelter employees informing them: 'Those who decide that they are not prepared to work under the new arrangements will, with regret, be issued with notices of dismissal.'
Dr. Wall said
"Workers at Shelter are taking industrial action because they have been told by the homeless charity that their wages must be cut. The Green Party of England and Wales supports the strikers, and calls on Shelter to reject pay cuts for its hard working staff.
"The tendering of services via the market is a way of cutting wage costs and increasing poverty rather than increasing efficiency. It simply widens the gap between rich and poor in Britain.
"It is richly ironic that a charity that seeks to deal with one symptom of poverty in the form of homelessness, has become part of a New Labour approach that will increase poverty."