Allen urges Housing Executive to resolve the ongoing pay dispute

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Allen urges Housing Executive to resolve the ongoing pay dispute

Ulster Unionist MLA and Communities Spokesperson Andy Allen MBE has called on the management of the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to bring to an end the long-running industrial action currently underway from many of its maintenance workers.

The East Belfast MLA was commenting after hearing that the dispute has since left thousands of important repairs undone.


Mr Allen said:


“The Northern Ireland Housing Executive direct labour organisation workforce, who provide an essential maintenance service for thousands of NIHE homes across Northern Ireland, have been on strike since last year over an ongoing pay dispute with little sign of a resolution.


“I have engaged regularly with the workforce and their representatives throughout which it has been clear that they would much prefer to be in work, as usual, delivering a vital and much-needed maintenance service rather than being out on strike.


"The issue has been allowed to run on for far too long and it's now having a knock-on impact on Housing Executive tenants. The Department for Communities, as well as the NIHE, will have been in no doubt from the very start that the longer it took to find a resolution the harder it would be to clear the backlog.


“Yet apart from occasional statements that they remain committed to try to end the dispute I've seen no real willingness from either the Department or the Housing Executive to secure a swift agreement.  


“I would therefore urge the NIHE Chief Executive Grainia Long and her senior management team to proactively bring to an end this industrial action.


"Whilst there is no doubt the ongoing political stalemate at Stormont is hampering progress, there should be no reason as to why officials can't be working at pace in the background with trade unions to try to find even the broad terms of a deal.”