Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year

As 2023 comes to an end, I want to thank all of you who’ve been working tirelessly to keep our public services going. I also want to thank those who’ve given up their time to support members, through representation and UNISON’s campaign work. 

I hope you can spend precious time with family and friends this Christmas, but as our public services rely on your work every day, I know your jobs may be just as demanding as the rest of the year.  

Throughout the festive period, the public still expects refuse services to keep running, people still need care in hospitals, care homes and the community, demands on environment agencies increase, everyone needs to be kept safe and pressures on staff working in energy and water companies build up.  

UNISON truly appreciates the vital work you do, and is always here for you when you need support in your workplace.  

It’s your work that has made 2023 a historical year, full of wins for UNISON. With your bravery and dedication, we secured higher pay for NHS staff, local government workers, police and justice staff, environment agency workers and won local pay campaigns for health care assistants, traffic wardens and higher education staff to name just a few. At a time where the cost of living is soaring, these wins are more important than ever. 

We also spent 2023 celebrating our Year of Black Workers. Led by UNISON’s National Black Members’ Committee, the theme has been all about establishing legacy to generate change. I know that many committees put their efforts into this year by focusing on challenging racism in the workplace, the ethnicity pay gap campaign, and by concentrating on the lived experiences of Black workers in UNISON. Our regions and branches have also started the ball rolling on getting employers to sign up to UNISON’s Anti-Racism Charter. 

In 2024, we will continue to work together to campaign for better pay, conditions, workers’ rights, equality and world-class public services.  

I wish you, your families and loved ones, a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.

Thank you all once again,