Robust Green Skills Training for employees in the Energy Sector

Conference notes addressing the climate change challenge requires a fundamental restructuring of the energy supply sector, moving away from the world�s fossil fuel-based system to one that relies on clean, renewable sources. The transition to a greener economy requires new skills. Skills needed for the newly emerging jobs, and skills needed for the adjusted existing […]

No going backwards on LGBT+ equality in Energy

Conference acknowledges that even before Covid, equality was increasingly being seen as a luxury in many Energy workplaces, with some employers barely abiding by the law. There is now a risk of going backwards. Conference recognises that equality is at the heart of UNISON, and that self organisation is an essential tool to achieving UNISON�s […]

Facilitating Disabled Workers to continue to work from home post pandemic

Prior to the pandemic there seemed to be practices within Energy employers where managers suggested that jobs such as back-office work and call centre work couldn�t be done from home due to technological limitations. People�s physical and mental difficulties can mean their conditions make it hard for people to get to and from offices. This […]

Accessing reasonable adjustments during COVID-19

Conference notes that a UNISON survey of disabled members working from home during COVID-19, including Energy workers, found that 53% did not receive any reasonable adjustments from their employer to help them to overcome the barriers they faced as a disabled person working from home. Only 5% had help from Access to Work, the flagship […]

Organising in Energy as we drive towards Net Zero

This special energy conference notes that to achieve Net Zero substantial investment will be needed within the Energy sector, both with established employers with whom we have an existing relationship, and likely new (and as yet not in existence) employers too) This could and should bring about new job growth within the energy sector over […]

UNISON Energy workers and the drive to Net Zero and Carbon Neutrality by 2050

This special energy conference notes that in November in Glasgow the previously delayed (due to Covid restrictions) COP 26 will take place. This will bring together nations from across the world to report on progress made since the COP 21 Paris Agreement was reached in 2015. This conference also notes that since 2015 the UK […]

Addressing inequality in the Energy Sector for Black workers in a post pandemic world

At its inception in 2016, the Energy and Utilities Skills Partnership, made up of 30 utility organisations; gas, power, water, and waste management, recognised the underrepresentation of Black workers across the sector, citing, �Workforce diversity and inclusion levels for the sector continue to be below the UK averages, with only 7% of the sector�s employees […]

Campaigning to end the disability pay gap

Conference is concerned that while the disability pay gap is increasing at an alarming rate the government have still not implemented the mandatory monitoring and reporting called for by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) in their report “Fair opportunities for all.” Research for EHRC found that while the disability pay gap is the […]

AGEISM AND THE EXPERIENCE OF DISABILITY

Conference believes that one of the barriers experienced by disabled workers can be the intersection of age discrimination and disability discrimination. For example, younger and older workers with similar impairments may be treated differently by their employers due to age-related perceptions about their physical or mental capacities. This can lead to bullying, or employers failing […]

Equipping our stewards to support our disabled members

Conference notes the fantastic standard of support and training for our shop stewards across the UK, and would like to see this enhanced with the addition of some disability-specific training. As disability activists we may well be aware of landmark case law that affects our disabled members in the workplace, but many of our shop […]

PIP assessment support

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) was introduced by Government as the replacement for DLA (Disability Living Allowance). PIP assessments are “an opportunity for you to talk about how your condition affects you – it’s not a diagnosis of your condition or a medical examination”. The health professionals undertaking the assessments have little or no expertise in […]

Disabled Women and Sickness Absence

Conference notes that there are a number of chronic and long term conditions including gynaecological conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome and lichen sclerosis which primarily affect women in the workplace and can be covered by the protections in the Equality Act 2010. There are also a number of cancers that primarily target women and […]

Accessible Domestic Abuse Services

Conference notes that disabled women are more likely to be subjected to domestic abuse than non-disabled women. Domestic abuse can include physical, sexual or emotional abuse – as well as the withdrawal of care from disabled women who require it and threats to ‘out’ LGBT+ women to their friends and families. According to the Women’s […]

Not just a bit of banter: Tackling sexual harassment of disabled women in the workplace

Conference notes that the #MeToo movement has illustrated how sexual harassment is widespread in our society and in the workplace but for too long has been swept under the carpet and dismissed as “just a bit of banter”. UNISON’s ‘Harassment at Work’ guide defines sexual harassment as “unwanted conduct that is of a sexual nature […]

Fighting Unfair Work Capability Assessments

Conference is concerned at the number of deaths following Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or Universal Credit (UC) claimants being found fit for work or where claimants have been denied Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payments (PIP). Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) figures show that over 2,300 former claimants of sickness-related benefits […]