Wealthy charity ‘disgracefully’ refusing to award national pay deal after years of doing so

Strikes by over 60 Hull and East Riding Citizens Advice workers intensified this week, as protests spread to the bureau’s offices in Bridlington and Goole.

Nine consecutive days of fresh strike action began this week, following four days of industrial action in late July and August.

The workers voted for strike action after the charity refused to increase pay in line with National Joint Council (NJC) scales operated by local authorities, as has been the norm for the last 20 years. The NJC has recommended a consolidated payment of £1,925 for all grades for 2022. 

Citizens Advice in Hull and East Riding can afford to implement the payment and had cash reserves of £1,076,156 as of 31 March 2022, with that amount set to increase by the end of the year.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Many of Citizens Advice’s workers are on poverty pay – earning just above the minimum wage. Disgracefully, this wealthy charity has reneged on two decades of working practice to deny them the NJC pay recommendation. It is appalling behaviour from an organisation that clearly has the cash reserves to pay. Our members have the full force of the union behind them, and this dispute will not end until Citizens Advice does the right thing and implements the pay deal.”

Over the last 10 years, NJC pay awards have resulted in real terms pay cuts of 27 per cent for Citizens Advice advisors. The NJC pay awards have also reduced the pay for admin staff from £5,000 above national minimum wage in 2014 to just 40p above the minimum wage today. 

The workers began strike action yesterday (29 August) and will continue striking on 31 August and 1, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 September. Citizens Advice services will not be available during this time. Industrial action will intensify if the dispute is not resolved.

Protests will take place outside the Bridlington Citizens Advice office on Tuesday 5 September from 10:00 and the Goole Citizens Advice office on Wednesday 6 September from 10:00. A picket line outside the Hull office will be held on all other dates. 

Unite regional officer Mike Wilkinson said: “For 20 years, the workers at Citizens Advice Hull and East Yorkshire have accepted NJC pay decisions despite them resulting in real terms wage cuts. But now this wealthy organisation is saying this year’s NJC recommendation is too high and is refusing to implement it. This is completely unethical and a stain on the charity’s reputation. These strikes will continue until pay award is implemented.”


For media enquires ONLY contact senior Unite communications officer Ryan Fletcher on 07849 090215 or 020 3371 2065. 

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Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest union with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Sharon Graham.