Glasgow homelessness workers step up strike action

Ian Leech
Ian Leech

Homelessness case workers are stepping up their strike with a rally in Glasgow today.

The 70 workers are seven weeks into an indefinite strike over pay grades.

They are joining with fellow strikers – porters from Dundee’s Ninewells hospital – who are coming to the city to join a protest outside Glasgow City Council meeting this afternoon.

Unison convenor Ian Leech said they wanted to call for talks to try and resolve the issue.

He told the Evening Times: “The last talks were on April 24 when the council talked about having a review which would take up to eight weeks. It was not a serious meeting, they were trying to gauge the resolve of our members.

“We have got 70 people who have been on strike for seven weeks. You can’t achieve that without serious commitment to the claim. These disputes are few and far between.”

He said the workers wanted an end to the dispute, saying the biggest issue was morale.

He added: “They want the employer to talk to us.”

Mr Leech said the dispute was leading to homeless people being put in accommodation with “questionable checks.”

He said the city’s north east housing office was also operating on reduced hours since the strike began on March 31.

The homelessness case workers, all members of Unison, argue that they do a job equivalent to case workers in other departments who are taking home £5000 a year more.

A spokesman for Glasgow City Council said the north east housing office had closed early on Friday afternoon.

He said people were sent to another homeless centre.

He said: “Casework staff are graded at an appropriate level as they work to arrange accommodation for individuals while detailed care assessments are undertaken by other social work staff.”


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