Unite, working with tenant groups across Newham, has made it clear that it will oppose cuts to the concierge service and Estates Cleaning services.
Residents have rejected the councils proposal to reduce the concierge service without a reduction in the charge, however what has come to light is the differing charges block to block and lease holder to rent payer, which residents are now raising concerns over.
The changes proposed in Estate Cleaning will see work normally undertaken by caretakers now being done by Street Cleansing staff.
“Our members in Street Cleansing are already struggling to deliver the service without this extra work being added to them” said Paul Travers, regional officer, “the issue to us is that facts and figures don’t match up to what we know is in place, staffing numbers are wrong and the new building cleaning will suffer with the proposals” he continued.
Unite the Union believe that the time allowed to clean a block will be cut by nearly 50% which means that residents will see the stairs, lifts and communal areas become dirty and un-kept as staff will not have the time to ensure they are looked after.
Paul Travers added "Many of our members are residents of the borough and take pride in their work yet they face being forced to cut corners to save money, the residents of Newham should be angry at this proposal as those making it probably do not even live here!
We are calling on the councillors of Newham to oppose the changes and instruct management to ensure that a well-run service is built upon and not taken apart by stealth.
I can remember some years ago when management were blaming the refuse collection workers for a poor service yet a report by an independent auditors made it clear that the staff were working well but they lacked having management that understood the borough and the work they were doing. I feel this could be repeated again in the estates of Newham and only the residents and our members will suffer."
Meetings of members and residents are being planned and it is hoped that management will engage meaningfully to ensure any changes are productive and not destructive.
For more information contact, Paul Travers, regional officer, on 020 8596 9966