Unite media release

What: Striking charity workers stage protest outside Hestia headquarters

Where: Beaufort House, 15 St Botolph St, London EC3A 7BB

When: Wednesday 18th January 2023 at 8.30am 

Community support workers in Hounslow stage week long strike

As the New Year gets underway strike action at Hestia escalates

Workers employed by Hestia are taking five days of strike action beginning today (Monday 16) and ending on Friday 20 January. The workers will also stage a protest at Hestia’s head office on Wednesday 18 January.  

Unite general secretary, Sharon Graham said: “Hestia’s shambolic management are running the service into the ground. The workers on strike are taking a brave stand against ignorant bosses who refused to listen to wise counsel. It must be dawning on Hestia’s management that strike action won’t end until negotiations begin and a deal is reached."

Hestia Hounslow LIFE is a referral service which provides adult services in Hounslow. Staff say the charity is refusing to address understaffing and imposing unrealistic changes to working practices which will make it near impossible to provide the important services that at risk Hounslow residents desperately need. This is despite the referral service receiving an increase in funding from the local authority. 

Hestia management are also refusing to negotiate with Unite over a cost of living pay increase and the provision of adequate travel expenses. Some staff have lost thousands of pounds worth of expenses as a result. Bosses have even outrageously threatened Unite members with disciplinary action if they discuss pay with colleagues during work.

The frontline workers who are Unite members provide support for people ranging from mental health support, addiction, immigration and language barrier support.

Unite regional officer, Steve O’Donnell said: “Hestia now faces a series of strikes in Hounslow. The council must be genuinely concerned about the disruption and Hestia’s refusal to negotiate. The issues won’t go away just because bosses ignore them.

“Workers continue to face unmanageable caseloads, low pay, lost expenses, increased stress and increased sickness.  Hestia have done nothing to address the lack of resources. Hestia management are truly delinquent. Bosses need to step-up and resolve this dispute.”


Contact: Ciaran Naidoo 07768 931 315

Twitter:@unitetheunion Facebook: unitetheunion1 Instagram: unitetheunion

Web: unitetheunion.org

Unite is the UK and Ireland’s leading union fighting to protect and advance jobs, pay and conditions for members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Sharon Graham.