Love, LGBT+ history and more wins

February may have been cold and wet but the UNISON fires burned brightly this month

It’s been freezing cold and dangerously wet, but that hasn’t stopped UNISON members this month.

February kicked off with Black members’ conference, where Yvonne Green was presented with the 2020 Nelson Mandela Award and Funmi Ayeni won Young Black member of the year.

Heart Unions week ran from 10-16 February, and we made this video to remind you why UNISON is the best:

UNISON continued to fight on the frontlines of food safety, and national officer Paul Bell teamed up with bereaved father Steve Nash to deliver a 216,938-strong petition to the Food Standards Agency (FSA) headquarters in London. The petition calls on the government to halt plans to deregulate food hygiene inspections.

Hundreds of UNISON members gathered in Bournemouth for an incendiary women’s conference, with addresses from Labour deputy leader candidate Angela Rayner, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis, president Josie Bird and assistant general secretary Christina McAnea.

Motions passed included fighting NHS fees for pregnant migrant women and women experiencing domestic violence, and UNISON launched its guidance on preventing sexual harassment at work.

UNISON’s campaign to improve conditions for care workers has forged on, with Rotherham council being the latest to sign up to the Ethical Care Charter.

A victory for members in Middlesbrough came when the council dropped plans to outsource 140 cleaners. Workers were told their jobs would be outsourced to a number of contractors, but after union pressure, the council relented.

As February is LGBT history month, UNISON celebrated its contributions to equality over the past 40 years.

Marching in the Isle of Man

Finally, we got the delightful news that union membership has increased for the second year in a row, with a 6.5% increase in growth since last year.

The figures show that we’re a healthy, strong and steadily growing union; hopefully, spring will bring even more growth.