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: Our union is a women’s union

Our union is the biggest and best in the country, because it’s unique. A union that did not put women first and fight discrimination wherever it is found would not be the union I know. It is up to all of us to work together in the years ahead, and build on the achievements of this great union, together.

Blog: A day of action for our NHS

UNISON is backing tomorrow’s day of action organised by Health Campaigns Together and The People’s Assembly. There will be a march in Central London (starting at noon on Gower Street) with other events organised around the country to mark the day.

Blog: Standing up for working people includes standing up for mental health

All too often, Mental Health does not receive the attention or the support, that other health problems do. Our union has a proud history of fighting for greater funding for mental health support, but just as importantly, for greater recognition of mental health in the workplace.

Blog: A constant reminder of what happens if you allow hate and division go unchallenged

On this day, we remember the precious lives lost and the deep grief felt by those who survived, honouring their memories by challenging hate and commit ourselves to ensure that “never again” is not just words, however powerful, it is a commitment we reaffirm today and every day.

Blog: Today I saw our union at its best

Teresa and Geoff are making a massive difference, even when times are tough. Thank you to them for the warm welcome today and for everything they, like all our activists, do for our union.

Remembering Irene Stacey – a stalwart of our union, and a friend

Throughout her time in UNISON – and through her illness – Irene’s bravery was clear to everyone who knew her, and an inspiration to all of us who worked and campaigned alongside her. She will be a huge loss to our NEC, her branch and our union.

Blog: Solidarity with Birmingham home care workers

In Birmingham, home care workers are striking this Saturday, because they’ve been pushed to breaking point. Government cuts to local authority budgets have led to Birmingham City Council slashing the home care/enablement budget by 40%.

Blog: Proud of UNISON’s history tackling inequality and racism

A union that did not prioritise these would not be the UNISON I know. We want this to be a time for action and not just reflection. Not just a time to learn from the past, but time to shape a new future. We cannot let the fight against racism slide off our agenda.

Blog: Carillion’s collapse has shown the true face of privatisation

What we’re increasingly seeing is a situation where the government and big business play roulette with public services – with the only possible outcomes a big financial gain for the privateers and a massive loss for everyone else.

Blog: The Tories have nothing new to offer

The Prime Minister and her party have shown once again today that they have nothing new to offer. Her new year’s resolution should be to move aside, and give Labour a chance to govern in the interests of the many, not a dwindling Tory few.

Happy Christmas – and thank you for all you do

The time of year has come when most people take time off work, spend time with loved ones, relax and recharge their batteries for the year ahead. Yet for many UNISON members and other public servants, Christmas is a continuation of the working year. Instead of eating turkey or Quality Street, many of you will […]

Cliff Williams – we have lost one of our union’s best

Everyone who worked closely with Cliff will miss his counsel, his support and his commitment – and I know his words “leave it with me, I’ll sort it”, will echo around our union for years to come. All of us who worked with him and laughed with him will miss him. All of us who learned from him and relied on him will miss him. All of us will miss Cliff so, so much.

Blog: Coming together for the benefit of our members

Different people from different professions and backgrounds, all with different skills, coming together, pooling their resources and their energy for the benefit of all UNISON members and the services they provide. That’s what our union is about when it’s at it’s best. That’s what I saw in Halton today.

Blog: Why our union is fighting the “two-child limit”

This is one of the most dreadful ideas I have ever heard from this government. It would be far better and far more preferable to scrap the two-child limit altogether. UNISON’s campaign will continue to fight for that in the weeks and months ahead – both because of the impact of this pernicious legislation on UNISON members, and because it is the right thing to do.

Blog: Today is an opportunity for MPs to stand up for public service workers

A letter to the Prime Minister – “After a life fighting for the interests of working people I am under no illusions about your government’s real plans. As things stand, it looks like you have no plan to restore public sector pay to pre-crisis levels. Nor do you have a plan to stop year on year pay misery, or to find a way of stemming the steady flow of disillusioned staff exiting our under pressure public services.”