Open University closed to disabled students

The Open University’s (OU) is a flexible system of learning that supports the largest disabled student community in the UK. Last year almost 20,000 disabled students studied at the OU and a large number were UNISON’s Disabled Members. Conference is concerned the planned closure of Regional Centres announced on 15 September may mean the OU […]

Attacks on access to justice is an attack on people with disabilities

Conference will note that we are now over 5 months into this Conservative Government and the wellbeing of our disabled members and their families is under constant threat from draconian legislation on welfare, social care cuts by local authority, changes to the benefits system and proposed changes to human rights legislation and a referendum to […]

Disabled Labour

Conference will note the Labour election defeat in May 2015 and the return of a Tory Government. Conference will further note the lack of any policies likely to benefit people with disabilities in the Tory party manifesto or Queens Speech. Moreover, a further round of welfare cuts and reduction of services is proposed. Conference will […]

New Ways of Working and Reasonable Adjustments

Conference notes that government cuts mean employers are looking for new ways of working to save money without cutting jobs. Often referred to as Lean or Agile Working, these methods were developed by Toyota and are predominantly used in manufacturing industries. If implemented correctly they can bring financial savings and improve working conditions. While we […]

Disabled members delivering public services in times of austerity

Conference condemns the continued attacks on the funding of public services. Austerity cuts are providing an environment for employers to continue to cut/reduce vital services, outsource services, or develop shared services with other public bodies and private organisations. The cuts are being used as a reason by employers to increase the use volunteers, have continual […]

Privatisation/Outsourcing and the Equality Duty

Conference is aware this Government is eroding the public sector by privatisation and outsourcing. The Post Office; East Coast Mainline; a third of recent NHS contracts; and more recently, over half of the Probation Service, all moving into private hands, not only will this lead to poorer service provision, it will also have a negative […]

Coming Out to get Facility Time

Conference will note that participation in self organisation is integral to the core work and values of UNISON. Yet activists are increasingly reporting that employers are cutting back on facility time and questioning the purpose of the meeting. Activists are feeling pressurised into disclosing their disability, sexual orientation or gender identity when they may have […]

Additional impact of learning difficulties on Mental Health

Conference 2014 acknowledged the particular mental health concerns for disabled LGBT people and agreed an action plan to start to address this. Conferences notes the additional impact that being diagnosed with a learning difficulty or disability can have upon our mental health. People who are not aware of their specific learning difficulty or disability or […]

Equal Old Age Pensions for Women

Conference notes that women who paid reduced National Insurance rates or ‘married women’s stamp’ for some or all of their working lives, are disadvantaged as a result of lower NI payments, unable to receive a state pension in their own right at retirement age. Conference are very concerned that most women were not told of […]

Improving the implementation of motions carried by the retired members conference

Each year, Conference carries many worthwhile motions and it is important that they are followed up and implemented to the best of UNISON’s ability. Unfortunately, much Conference time is also spent debating motions which, while not necessarily identical, are often very similar to those carried in previous years. Whilst this is helpful in keeping issues […]

Raising awareness of prostate cancer treatment inequalities for older men

Prostate Cancer UK has researched the way older men receive treatment for diagnosed prostate cancer. In their report ‘5 Inequalities/ 5 Solutions’, the evidence produced reiterates the need that the action called for in Motion 16, UNISON National Retired Members Conference 2014, Southport, should be implemented urgently together with more specific action to further the […]

SELF ORGANISED GROUPS CONFERENCES – RETIRED MEMBERS REPRESENTATIVES

Conference notes the review of arrangements for the National Retired Members Conference which is being carried out by the National Retired Members Committee (NRMC) following the carrying of Motion 19 (and the remittal of Motion 20) at the 2014 Retired Members Conference. Conference also notes the change to National Rule D.6.8 passed at the 2014 […]

TWO TIER STATE PENSION

Conference notes that with the introduction of the new state pension from April 2016 there will exist a two tier system. Existing pensioners will not be entitled to receive the new level of basic state pension. Although the method of indexation will be the same for both old and new pensions i.e. the triple lock, […]

Some day my prints will come

Conference notes that, despite numerous protests including references to the National Retired Members’ Committee and motions to the National Retired Members’ Conference, the Conference Bulletin containing all the vital administrative information about this year’s Conference was made available on line only, with no paper notification. Further, there was again no notification to Branches or Retired […]

Concessionary travel passes.

Conference notes the benefits that access to public transport, such as buses, trains and coaches, can bring to many disabled people. Concessionary Passes enable this access but the conditions applicable vary across different nations of the United Kingdom. Also currently, passes issued in one country cannot be used in another. Conference believes that there would […]