Net zero and LGBT+ members

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2022 Water, Environment & Transport Conference
22 February 2022

Conference recalls that the “Net Zero” motion passed at the 2021 WET conference called for the service group to work with all appropriate stakeholders in UNISON to promote policies that support a net zero strategy, including proper funding for a ‘Just Transition’ and a significant increase in employment in WET alongside new skills and training packages.

Conference recognises that the self-organised groups have an important role to play in raising awareness of the policies being promoted by the service group. It welcomes the motion ‘Climate change is an LGBT+ issue’ adopted by the 2021 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender plus (LGBT+) conference, which recognised that we are at a defining moment when it comes to climate change. Its impacts are global in scope and unparalleled, and it is evident that on a global level people who are already most vulnerable and marginalised will experience the greatest impacts of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report identified LGBT+ communities as one such group.

Conference also notes that UNISON is part of a broad-based civil society coalition, including the TUC, Friends of the Earth and Amnesty International, which is campaigning for a new ‘failure to prevent’ law that would mandate both companies and the public sector to undertake human rights due diligence across their supply chains, and would hold companies to account when they fail to prevent human rights abuses and environmental damage in their business. This would increase protection for workers, communities, human rights defenders and the environment.

Conference therefore calls on the service group executive to:

1)Work with the national LGBT+ committee to raise awareness amongst LGBT+ members on climate change and the policies being promoted by the WET service group to support a just transition

2)Work with other sections of the union as appropriate to produce guidance for WET branches on ethical procurement of any goods they purchase (such as computing equipment and furniture)

3)Work with other sections of the union as appropriate to produce guidance for WET branches on ways to advocate for ethical procurement policies with employers

4)Work with the NEC to support the campaign for a new ‘failure to prevent’ law