Cuts and the Black member experience

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2012 National Delegate Conference
27 February 2012

Black members are on the brink of economic meltdown from the coalition governments’ cuts, scapegoating and hypocrisy.

The cuts to public services have directly affected Black members and the most vulnerable in our society, creating anger and a real sense of injustice.

Conference is deeply concerned that despite over 40 years of anti-racism legislation, Black members continue to face institutionalised racism in the workplace, with this continued inequality in the treatment of Black members. It has led to many being diagnosed with mental health problems, a further stigma which is influencing decisions and treatments of Black members in the health service.

Black members’ self-organised groups in UNISON have to be at the forefront of campaigning for Black members in the workplace. It is an important role to play in preventing unlawful discrimination and promoting equal opportunities and good race relations.

The strategy for Black members should be taken to build greater density and links within the wider community, building campaigns to support the unions’ activities in defending public services and fighting the cuts. The campaign must highlight the increase in Black unemployment as a direct result of the government austerity measures, the recession and Black members being targeted for redundancies disproportionately as workers and community groups.

Conference calls on the National Executive Council to:

1) report patterns of inequality across regions through Equality Impact Assessments data and whether employers have followed best practice;

2) write to Regional Black Members’ Committees to encourage Black members in branches across regions to share experiences with the respective Regional Black Members’ Committee;

3) develop a strategy and campaign to support Black members that are subjected to inequality and discrimination in the workplace, emphasising the importance of maintaining Black representatives in the workplace;

4) report back the findings through bulletins and Black Action;

5) support the RBMC workplans that seek to increase Black members participation in the regions and in branch campaigning against the cuts;

6) provide updates at all Black members caucus meetings at all annual conferences where they are provided from June 2012 National Delegate Conference.