UNISON contributes to London housing consultation

Union stresses the need for any definition of key workers to include all those in public services, not just those in uniform

UNISON has responded this week to London mayor Sadiq Khan’s consultation on intermediate housing for key workers in the capital, on behalf of the London region.

London regional secretary Maggi Ferncombe said: “Public sector workers are the backbone of London, without whom our infrastructure would collapse.

“The valued work they do got London through lockdown, yet the majority cannot live anywhere near where they work – sometimes travelling three or more hours a day to get to and from work.

“Put simply, they have been priced out of London. As the union for public sector workers, we welcome the work the mayor of London is doing on affordable housing for key workers.

“But it is not just those in uniform that are vital – the porters, refuse workers and teaching assistants are the workers who make the NHS, local government and schools tick; they deserve the chance to live in London close to where they deliver their vital services.”

The mayor’s consultation seeks to find solutions on improving access to affordable housing for London’s key workers.

UNISON’s response highlights the need to deliver social, rented and genuinely affordable housing for all key workers on modest incomes. This type of housing is in particular demand due to the high costs of private renting and home ownership.