Social workers in Brighton and Hove have walked out again over pay.

Unison said the two strike days, today and tomorrow, come after the union was unable to undertake any meaningful negotiations due to delays of several weeks in getting necessary data from the council.

The adult social workers, of which there are over 100 in the union, carry out work in hospitals, rehabilitation centres, care homes and the community, supporting adults with physical disabilities, mental health, homelessness and substance issues and carrying out vital safeguarding work.

Striking workers want pay parity with family and children’s services social workers, who have been in receipt of an annual market supplement payment of 12.5 per cent for the past six years.

Read more: City's social workers walk out for first time in dispute about pay

Not receiving this market supplement payment leaves the average adults’ social worker nearly £30,000 worse off, Unison said.

It said around a quarter of local authorities pay a market supplement to their adults' social workers, and a crisis in social worker recruitment and retention across the country continues to grow.

Brighton and Hove UNISON joint branch secretary, Corinna Edwards-Colledge said: “Our adults’ social workers dedicate their working lives to helping others, but years of underfunding and cuts from central government mean they are struggling to deliver the services communities desperately need. With the cost of living in Brighton and Hove being one of the highest in the UK, many are struggling to survive financially.


To have access to all of our best stories subscribe to The Argus using our special offer here

“The last thing our members want to do is strike, but the only reason they are escalating this dispute is to protect jobs and services. It is disappointing how little engagement we have had from what is one of the largest Labour majority councils in the country.

“Why are they not standing with us? Why are councillors not coming to us to talk to us about our concerns?

“The only way to settle this dispute is to work with us on improving pay, conditions and professional development.”

Social workers picketed at Hove Town Hall this morning and lobbied the full council from 3.15pm.

On Friday they will be picketing outside Brighton Town Hall and hosting a mince pie and solidarity event at lunchtime for other workers to come and show their solidarity.

Brighton and Hove UNISON said it is planning further and escalating action in the new year if there is no significant progress following these next two days of action.