This sector includes cleaners, caterers, porters, construction, retail, hairdressers, nail technicians, security guards, nannies, waiting and bar staff, shop floor sales assistants, baristas, chambermaids, gardeners and more! If you work in anything related to service, UVW is the union for you.
Workers in this sector frequently work for service providers who place them in one or more locations. They are frequently outsourced, work on zero-hours contracts or struggle to receive even their most basic employment rights. They could be working in a Ferrari showroom, or the Ministry of Justice. A reputable university, or a major hospital.
We believe that every worker deserves dignity, equality and respect. We believe the every worker, united with their colleagues, can fight the bosses and win!
Fighting for a Living Wage and decent, equal rights
Our members in the service sector are predominantly from former colonised countries in Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa. Workers are frequently middle-aged, lacking fluency in English, and unable to see any realistic alternative to a life of constant struggle working 50 or 60 hours a week.
UVW has built its reputation uniting migrant workers
Since 2014, we have helped to organise hundreds of migrant workers in dozens of workplaces. Their common grievances are low pay, insufficient sick pay, and minimal rights in stark contrast to those enjoyed by in-house staff in the same buildings.
We are uncompromising in our approach. If they cannot be swiftly granted the London Living Wage or other key demands, we will ballot for strike action. We then empower and assist the workers to force the hands of the workplace bosses and services provider, by any legal means — usually as noisy and disruptive as possible.
Our victories set off chain reactions of resistance
When migrant workers secure a Living Wage and no longer fear sickness or injury, their families and local areas prosper. Often, their victory will be automatically shared with dozens, hundreds or even thousands of others in the same buildings, or other sites.
News spreads especially fast within migrant communities in London. Family, friends and acquaintances are attracted to the union, and launch new campaigns.
Our aims are simple:
1. That every one of us be properly compensated, fairly treated, and secure in their job
2. That universal access to justice be restored
BECOME A MEMBER
We exist to unify and organise our sector, securing justice for all.