Area Reviews

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2016 Local Government Service Group Conference
26 February 2016

Conference notes with concern that in September 2015 the Government announced a review of post-16 education and training. Area based reviews have begun, effecting members in colleges across England. Conference believes that these reviews are likely to result in further cuts, job losses and site closures, in a sector where members have already faced severe cuts to funding, redundancies, reorganisations and increased workloads.

While UNISON and other FE & Sixth Form unions are taking part in meetings with the local area review leads, we are not part of the local or national steering groups. Neither are we automatically party to the key information that will influence the outcomes in these reviews. Conference believes that as representatives of the staff that ensure the delivery of post 16 education and training, we must have a seat at the table and receive all relevant data as a matter of course.

This period of uncertainty provides UNISON with an opportunity to recruit and organise within colleges. Conference therefore notes the importance of branches having organising action plans in place.

Conference therefore calls on the SGE to:-

1)Campaign to give us a seat on the local review bodies and provide us with all the documentation and data that forms part of the review;

2)Work with regions and branches to fully participate in the area reviews to protect the interests of members in FE;

3)Work with the regions and branches to communicate regularly with members affected by the area reviews and update them of potential job losses and site closures;

4)Where mergers and or reviews have taken place, local representatives should be supported in the process;

5)Support FE & Sixth Form College members in local campaigns to resist the cuts and oppose compulsory redundancies, which could include agreeing protocols on redundancy avoidance;

6)Encourage branches to develop organising action plans for their FE workplaces.