“Clarion Housing Group must raise pay and stop pension cuts to avoid strike action, says UNISON”


Yep. My “social mission” employer is cutting my pay by up to 8% and also planning to sack me after 30 years of service (and other UNISON members) in November, in order for them to break the pensions promises they made to staff (and local authorities). Watch this space.

UNISON Press release – more to follow. Please pass on. https://www.facebook.com/clarionunison

Staff working at Clarion Housing Group, including caretakers and sheltered housing wardens, have rejected a 5% pay offer, and their union UNISON, has urged the employer to think again.

UNISON says the current offer is essentially a pay cut, as it falls well short of inflation and that staff deserve more.

Clarion has also announced plans to cut the pensions of nearly 300 staff. The housing association has said it intends to close the defined benefit scheme, which means employees will be significantly worse off, adds the union.

Clarion is planning to close the pension scheme by using ‘fire and rehire’ tactics, says UNISON. The housing association is threatening to sack staff and re-employ them on new contracts and an inferior pension scheme. Staff have been told that anyone who refuses to accept the new contracts will lose their jobs, says UNISON.

UNISON London convenor and tenancy specialist at Clarion John Gray said: “Clarion has offered little or no justification for wrecking the pension futures of so many of their long-serving staff.

“Employees were promised their pensions were safe if they transferred into Clarion from the local authorities where they were originally employed. Housing association managers have now gone back on their word. This is completely unacceptable behaviour, and the employer must think again.”

UNISON London regional organiser Ezequiel Kramer said: “The fact that Clarion, the largest housing association in the country, is using this extreme practice to impose detrimental changes on staff pensions is disgraceful.

“This will affect staff moral and it shows the type of employer Clarion really is.”

Notes to editors:

– Staff are currently on a final salary pension scheme. With a defined benefit (DB) pension scheme, the amount paid out is based on how many years someone has been a member of a scheme and the salary they earned at the time they left that employer or retired.

– A consultative ballot conducted by UNISON over this year’s pay offer saw 92% of staff who voted reject the 5% offer, with 87% supporting strike action and 91% action short of strike action.

– UNISON is the UK’s largest union with more than 1.3 million members providing public services in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in the public, voluntary and private sectors.

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