By Ben Simmons
Angry sacked workers will be demonstrating outside this year’s Housing Innovation awards in London tonight. They will be highlighting how Liverpool Mutual Homes (LMH) chief executive, Steve Coffey, exploited the loyal workforce.
The sacked workers, all members of Unite, are descending on awards at The Millennium Gloucester Hotel, London. They will be asking attendees whether they think LMH deserves to win an award of excellence given its track record.
For decades, the workers, who provide housing and repair services to Liverpool city’s social housing tenants, have found themselves passed from pillar to post between various companies. They have struggled with constant attacks on their terms and conditions and when their last employer Kinetics went into administration last year the entire workforce was made redundant.
Despite this LMH — up for awards in two categories for “Most Innovative Community Engagement” and “Most Innovative Refurbishment Project” — delivered a stinging slap in the face to its workforce by abandoning the TUPE transfer instead of building a truly innovative workforce. This left workers, some with 35 years of service, with no employment rights and no long service.
Although some workers were then re-employed by LMH, its long serving workers were made redundant and LMH subcontracted their work to agency labour. The remaining workers were forced to accept new inferior terms and conditions.
Speaking ahead of the protest Unite national officer Peter Allenson said: “Companies who exploit workers’ rights do not deserve to be nominated as leaders in industry. The only award LMH deserves is the UK’s worst employer! From August last year to this date workers have been subject to bullying, harassment and intimidation by LMH CEO Steve Coffey.
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