NEC reiterates condemnation of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Meeting hears that UNISON ‘will continue to work with the international trade union movement to offer support to Ukraine’

UNISON in solidarity with Ukraine graphic

UNISON’s national executive council (NEC) has condemned the Russian invasion and the war in Ukraine in the strongest possible terms.

Taking place on Tuesday, the international day of action in support of Ukraine, the union continued to express total horror and disgust over the actions of Vladimir Putin.

General secretary Christina McAnea again expressed her pride that UNISON was one of the first unions to condemn the war on the day of the invasion and she stressed how UNISON was one of the leading union offering the practical solidarity and support to Ukrainian unions through the international trade union movement.

“We called for an immediate withdrawal and a peaceful, negotiated settlement, Ms McAnea told the NEC. “Our international team has been in contact with our sister unions in Ukraine and have been liaising closely with Public Services International and European Public Service Union to build support for the Ukrainian unions.

“UNISON has already donated £10,000 to go to the ITUC solidarity fund, we are encouraging members and branches to donate to the DEC and we will continue to work with the international trade union movement to offer support to Ukraine.

“Let’s make no mistakes,” the general secretary continued. “This is an absolute, total war. It’s a totally unjustified attack on an independent, democratic country. Children are dying on a daily basis and we as a union, totally condemn what Putin is doing.”

Although the war in Ukraine dominated the meeting, the NEC also discussed ongoing industrial action across various service groups including higher education and there was special praise for the equal pay claim in Glasgow with members voting 96% in favour of strike action.

The NEC also heard that:

  • UNISON’s Put NHS Pay Right campaign had started;
  • the union is continuing to campaign on domestic legislation such as the Human Rights Act;
  • the union is studying the levelling up White Paper to push for ‘investment and not just words’;
  • campaigning on Myanmar is continuing;
  • the union is supporting Suffolk County Council’s You Care We Care campaign to ensure care workers earn at least a living wage;
  • mobilising is starting for events in the summer to campaign on the rising cost of living;
  • the union is continuing to actively support the anti-racism demonstrations this weekend;
  • the union is asking branches to donate to a winter fuel appeal to support members struggling with rising energy prices;
  • work on the union’s Year of the Disabled Worker is gaining momentum.