Response to Unite the Union ballot rejecting 29 June 2023 offer

Emma Haddad, Chief Executive of St Mungo’s, said:

“We are extremely disappointed that Unite the Union’s members have voted to reject the offer we negotiated with Unite at ACAS on 29 June 2023 and proposed jointly with Unite to its members.

“We understand the pressures that the cost living crisis is placing on some of our colleagues and we went to great lengths to put forward a comprehensive 10-part package. This included a new consolidated pay offer designed to support colleagues and significant improvements to the wider benefit package.

“Had the offer been accepted, over 90% of colleagues would have received a minimum increase of £2,975 for the current financial year when added to the annual pay award. In percentage terms, this would have meant a pay rise of 7-14%.

“We have made a series of payments and offers that attempt to support colleagues through this difficult period. All our offers have been additional to the annual pay rise.

“It is highly regrettable Unite has not accepted the latest offer at a time when the demand for our services is increasing. We need to ensure the charity is sustainable going forward so we can continue to deliver services to some of the most vulnerable people in society.

“This outcome means negotiations, through ACAS, must continue so we can bring an end to this unprecedented period of strike action.

“We remain committed to supporting people recovering from, or at risk of, homelessness and continue to do this vital work during our ongoing negotiations with Unite.”

– Ends –


Notes to Editors

ACAS is the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service and is an independent public body which receives government funding. It works with employers and employees to improve workplace relationships.

The 10-part package agreed at ACAS was as follows:

  1. A consolidated St Mungo’s allowance in addition to nationally agreed pay awards, payable alongside and in addition to base salary to everyone on up to and including National Joint Council (NJC) pay point 36 (including locums), effective from 1 April 2023. This will be £1,050 per person (pro rata for part time workers).
  2. An increase in annual leave from 25 days to 28 days as a minimum for everyone in the organisation and for all new joiners, and an increase to 31 days for those with over 5 years’ service (both pro-rata for part time workers). In addition, the removal of the drop in annual leave when moving to a new role. An extra three days’ annual leave represents a notional increase of 1.3%.
  3. The temporary mileage uplift to become permanent.
  4. A review of the wider package of benefits within the next six months, with a commitment to ensure family friendly policies (e.g. maternity and paternity leave, carers’ leave, sickness and compassionate leave) are modern and competitive.
  5. The removal of the probationary period when moving to a new role internally.
  6. To ensure transparency, a commitment to an external review of spot rate pay (pay outside of the NJC scale), and ongoing, regular conversations in the Joint National Committee regarding senior roles and senior pay. A further commitment to consult with the Leadership Team about their pay award in 2023-24. In addition, to consult with the Leadership Team on the pay disparity concerns voiced by Unite members, and on not increasing the size of Leadership Team Plus.
  7. A commitment to establish a well-being fund for teams to access, working with colleagues to define and create it.
  8. A commitment to continue lobbying, with partners, for better funding across the homelessness sector.
  9. A commitment to sharing financial information quarterly with the whole organisation. Unite commit to use this information with the intention of working together to avoid future disputes.
  10. Early payment of the 2023-24 NJC pay award that is still being negotiated, with a view to paying the difference once the final award is agreed, in line with our recognition agreement.

The proposed pay increase was worth:

  • 4% to 5% for those earning £25,000.
  • 3.5% to 4% for those earning £30,000.
  • when combined with the 2023-24 NJC pay award, which we know will be a minimum of £1,925 per person, the total increase in 2023-24 will be between:
  • 10% and 14.6% for everyone up to pay point 15.
  • 7.4% and 11.1% for everyone on pay points 17 to 30.

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