Solidarity with Colombia

Conference notes that in Colombia: 1)184 trade unionists were assassinated in 2002, and that in all 7,000 people were victims of the political conflict, mostly peasants, indigenous people and the poor; 2)President Uribe Velez has opted for repression rather than negotiations, suspending democratic rights and implementing military rule in two regions, and increasing dramatically detentions […]

Organising in the Community and Voluntary Sector

Conference notes that substantial progress has been made in recent years in improving UNISON’s membership base and organisation in the community and voluntary sector. At the end of 2003 UNISON membership in this sector had reached in excess of 42,000, a 40 per cent increase since the adoption by Conference of a national organising plan […]

English Regional Assemblies

2004 is likely to be a significant year in determining the future governance of England as three regions hold a referendum on directly elected assemblies. UNISON has consistently opposed, and continues to resist, the reorganisation of local government that will take place following a yes vote. Over the past year UNISON has resisted the government’s […]

UNISON’s Anti-Racist Strategy

Conference notes that the National Executive Council as part of its overall objectives for 2004/5 has identified a number of priorities that inform UNISON’s race equality work. These are: 1)developing and implementing an anti-racist strategy across the union; 2)tackling racism in the workplace; 3)the effective implementation of the Race Relations (Amendment) Act; 4)promoting respect for […]

Occupational Pensions

Conference notes the growing retreat by employers from the provision of good quality occupational schemes. This includes not only the closure of final salary schemes, but also moves to downgrade schemes by worsening accrual rates, increasing employee contributions and raising retirement ages. Conference believes that unless the above trends are reversed, the results will be […]

Choice, Equity and Accountabiilty in the NHS

Conference applauds the work of the union in campaigning against the introduction of foundation trusts and highlighting the marketisation of the NHS. Conference applauds in particular the sustained campaigning through the Labour Link which led to the overwheling rejection of foundation hospitals by the 2003 Labour party conference. Conference also recognises the important role played […]

Removal of Intolerable Sickness Absence Sanctions

Conference condemns the introduction of intolerant and mandatory sickness absence sanctions such as the Bradford score, when used as part of managing attendance policies. The Bradford score can be set at any trigger point, whereby after a number of days off or a number of spells of absence a management action occurs. This crude approach […]

Restoration of the Value of the State Pension

Conference notes the introduction of the pensioner credits scheme and notes that more than one million pensioners have not made application for such credits. The low take-up rate of these means-tested benefits was thoroughly predictable Conference believes that restoration of the state pension scheme to its former monetary value is the proper way forward and […]


Conference notes that: 1)the UK continues to face a crisis in its pensions provisions for the future; 2)despite government initiatives such as raising payments to the poorest pensioners, free eye tests and the winter fuel allowance, too many pensioners are still condemned to live and die in poverty; 3)there are widespread moves in private sector […]

Organisation of Young Members

Conference notes: 1) the hard work and commitment of activists at branch, regional and national level that resulted in the excellent young members’ recruitment figures for 2003, and that this is recognised as an essential part of UNISON’s work in building a sustainable, organised union; 2)that successful campaigning/organising work led by young members around workplace […]

Transport Policy

Conference notes the success of the free bus travel system in Wales which has extended travel to all persons aged over 60 and disabled people. The Welsh system allows travel on any one, or a series of, buses for journeys beginning and ending in Wales. The benefits have been substantial and have led to an […]

National Minimum Wage

Conference notes that: 1)UNISON’s latest submission to the Low Pay Commission provides a radical and progressive solution to the problem of low paid young workers; 2)UNISON welcomes the government’s decision to introduce a minimum wage for 16 and 17 year olds, from 1 October 2004. However, we are concerned that the government chose to retain […]

International Policy

International developments, whether economic, social or political, affect all areas of UNISON’s membership. Conference, in recognising this, notes that one of the founding principles of the union was that of international solidarity and friendship with trade unions overseas and in particular with unions struggling against the forces of oppression, privatisation and injustice. For decades we […]

Employment Rights in the UK

Conference welcomes the government’s employment rights bill 2003 but believes that it does not go far enough, leaving workers in Britain with less protection than those employed in the rest of Europe. We welcome those provisions that build on the Employment Rights Act of 1999, improving the process of recognition and establishing important and consultation […]

Elderly Persons’ Homes

Conference notes with concern the increasing number of local authority elderly person’s homes which have transferred with the transfer to private companies. Conference believes that a well-funded and accountable local authority provision of this service is essential to the establishment and maintenance of high standards across all providers of this service. Conference also notes that […]