Architectural workers’ union joins Unite

Architectural workers' union joins Unite

A trade union representing architectural workers has merged with Unite, the UK’s largest union.

The Section of Architectural Workers (SAW) was set up as a democratic grassroots union run by and for its members. Previously affiliated with the United Voices of the World (UVW), it has now formed a national branch within Unite.

Its previous successes include co-ordinating members in taking industrial action to work from home during the pandemic and supporting over 150 members with individual casework resulting in settlements totalling hundreds of thousands of pounds.

SAW also successfully campaigned to elect Muyiwa Oki as the first worker-representative to serve as president of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Unite is extremely pleased to welcome members of the Section of Architectural Workers to our union family. As part of Unite, SAW’s members will be able to closely collaborate with the wider construction sector, access expert training and receive substantial legal and industrial support during disputes.

“Unite looks to forward to working with SAW’s indomitable organisers in helping a growing numbers of architectural workers achieve improvement to their jobs, pay and conditions.”

A SAW spokesperson said: “This is an incredibly exciting moment for SAW and the architectural labour movement generally. By affiliating to Unite, the UK’s leading union, architectural workers are now even better equipped to fight against the workplace mistreatment they so regularly face.

“If you are not already a member of SAW, now is the time to join Unite, get organised and transform the sector from the bottom-up.”

Unite regional officer Declan Murphy said: “With the creation of the new architectural branch, Unite now represents workers across the entire construction industry. From the drawing board to putting shovels in the ground, from engineering to joinery, Unite is there standing up for all construction workers.”

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