General secretary’s blog

Dave Prentis is UNISON’s general secretary – the highest elected post in the union. He speaks up for UNISON members, campaigns for public services and leads the union.

Read Dave’s blog for views on issues UNISON is working on and information on what he’s doing.

Blog: As we remember the dead and injured, we reaffirm our demand for safe and healthy work for all

Each year on or near 28 April, UNISON joins people around the world to celebrate International Workers’ Memorial Day

Blog: We should remember all that they fought for, and be spurred on by their example in the years ahead

In recent days we have lost two people who meant so much to our union, and who were a huge part of making UNISON strong. Brenda Hudson and Danny Gillespie were both people I was proud to know, and whose lives were dedicated to supporting public services and everyone who works in them.

Blog: The Conservative Party are the problem, not the solution

A general election is always a moment when we decide the future of our country, but perhaps never more so than this time with Brexit on the horizon. After all this Tory government have done, they’re now seeking a renewed mandate to make public servants worse off, easier to fire or even put more of them out of work. Nowhere is this threat clearer than in the NHS.

This election will be about the future of our public services

As Britain prepares to leave the EU, this election will be about the future of our public services, and the austerity agenda that the Tory Party has unleashed upon those services for the past seven years. They cannot and must not be given a renewed mandate for further cuts and axing our rights at work.

Blog: The scandal of 15-minute social care visits must end

One of the tests of a decent society is how we treat those who cannot care for themselves. Every day that we allow 15 minute care visits to continue is a day that we fail that test.

Blog: A phenomenal campaign, made possible by inspirational branch leadership

School support staff can go into work with their heads held high, knowing that the value of the work they do for children and schools has been recognised. But they will never forget the way that they, their branch and their whole union came together and won a better deal – and neither will I.

Blog: Safer workplaces – an impact that should never be understated

Thanks to the work of UNISON’s health and safety reps, public sector employees are less likely to suffer injury in the workplace. Tens of thousands of UK workers die every year because of their work and many more are injured. But thanks to the efforts of more than 6,000 safety reps and branch officers, UNISON members are safer.

Blog: These negotiations will define the future of our country for generations

There is a great deal on the line, and these negotiations will define the future of our country for generations. Yet we still know far too little about what the government’s red lines are – and whether ministers plan on selling the British people down the river.

We are fortunate to be surrounded by those who greeted an act of inhumanity with humanity

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the those killed in Westminster yesterday, those injured by this barbaric act and their families, friends and loved ones. At times like these, when those who wish to spread hate attempt to divide us, we must remember those who run towards scenes of danger – brave members of […]

Blog: Work in local government in Scotland? Vote to reject this pay deal

If you work in local government in Scotland, have your say and vote to reject this pay deal via unison.org.uk/lgscot17. And stand up for better wages for vital public services.

Blog: The other u-turns Hammond could have made

The media will mock the Chancellor for his u-turn, but history will judge him and his party far more harshly for the u-turns he has failed to make.

Blog: MPs must guarantee EU citizens the right to remain

Last week I wrote to all MPs backing EU citizens right to remain in the UK. I told them about the 67,000 UNISON members who are EU citizens working in public services, strongly urrged them to support the Lords amendment which guarantees the right to remain and to do all they can to convince the Government to change course.

Blog: The WASPI campaign is a struggle for fairness

Some women have already waited years for an answer from the government – some as many as six years. That’s not fair or just, and it’s created real financial hardship, especially for those who’ve waited 14 years from the passage of legislation to being informed about the changes made. That’s 14 wasted years where different retirement plans could have been made.

Blog: Hammond’s inadequate Budget

While the Chancellor has – at long last – woken up to the reality of a situation exacerbated by his austerity government, the money announced yesterday won’t end the extreme rationing of care. In reality the government is just treading water, as it waits for a real social care plan to emerge.

Blog: A rapid rise in the number of apprentices is on the way

With significant changes on the way, this week is a great opportunity to speak to UNISON members, employers and apprentices and recruit apprentices into UNISON. A rapid rise in the number of apprentices is on the way – let’s make sure they’re part of our union, and getting the best possible deal.