Young members month

November is Young Workers’ Month – a time to celebrate the contribution that young workers make to public services and to UNISON.

#ywm17

November is young workers’ month! We are aiming to raise the profile of young workers and young UNISON members by recruiting and organising them to help us win better working conditions and build an even stronger union.

This November, we are aiming to raise the profile of young workers and young UNISON members by recruiting and organising them to help us win better working conditions and build an even stronger union.

All branches and regions are encouraged to hold at least one event during November that helps bring young workers together for a campaigning, educational, or awareness-raising event.

And we want these events to have a recruitment element too! Thanks to KickStart funding you can make a bid for up to £250 to pay for a venue, refreshments, etc for any of these activities that include a learning element!

Check the information and application form for details or contact Martin Russo on m.russo@unison.co.uk or Jon Tennison on j.tennison@unison.co.uk in the Union Learning Fund team for more information.

What’s happening?

At national level, the national young members’ forum is prioritising work around raising awareness of issues faced by young workers, and in particular:

  • the need for a real living wage – a minimum of £10 per hour – to combat the low level of the minimum wage and the age discrimination enshrined in legislation;
  • the importance of recruiting and organising apprentices in public services.

And we are launching our ’27 under 27′ project, a set of portraits of young members, with some biographical information, showing the range of work and contribution they make, and the interests they have.

What can you do?

Branches are strongly encouraged to use the month to run an event for apprentices. One suggestion is a briefing meeting on their rights at work, and maybe a self-assessment of learning needs using the union learn app.

On this page you’ll find links to a range of resources that can be used in activities around these particular issues.

Young workers and the living wage

And there is also our briefing on the living wage. The first week of young workers’ month is living wage week – and the announcement of the new living wage rate by the Living Wage Foundation.

This is not the so-called ‘national living wage’ set by the government, but a real living wage, set independently, and which does not discriminate on grounds of age.

In November 2017 the UK Living Wage rate was increased to £8.75 per hour, and to £10.20 per hour in London.

UNISON policy is to support the campaign to win a national minimum wage of £10 per hour for all, regardless of age.

Share and tell!

Finally – don’t forget to let us know what your branch is doing! You can post it on the young members Facebook page ‘Young Members In UNISON’ or tweet to @youngunison. Hashtag for the month is #ywm17

Suggested activities

Apprentices: A meeting to brief them on apprentices’ rights at work

Apprentices pocket guide: Rights, Respect, and Reward – UNISON pocket guide for apprentices – order from UNISON learning and Organising services m.russo@unison.co.uk or j.tennison@unison.co.uk or j.pettit@unison.co.uk and visit our apprentices web page

Living wage: a petition to your employer, a local employer, or local MP etc calling for them to support a real living wage

Sign the Pay Up Now! petition to ask the government to scrap the public sector pay cap and give public servants a meaningful pay rise now.

Suggested activities

  • Apprentices: A meeting to brief them on apprentices rights at work
  • Living Wage: a petition to your employer, or local MP calling for them to support a real living wage (it’s national Living Wage Week in the first week of November)
  • Apprentices pocket guide: “Rights, Respect, and Reward” – UNISON pocket guide for apprentices – order from Learning and Organising Services m.russo@unison.co.uk or j.tennison@unison.co.uk or j.pettit@unison.co.uk and visit our Apprentices web page
  • Sign the Pay Up Now! petition to ask the government to scrap the public sector pay cap and give public servants a meaningful pay rise now.