The dangers facing women refugees

Conference notes with dismay the reported deaths of at least 26 Nigerian women and girls, who are suspected to have been murdered while attempting to cross the Mediterranean. The bodies of the women were brought to the southern Italian port of Salerno by the Spanish ship Cantabria on Sunday 5 November, and prosecutors immediately opened […]


Conference applauds Yvette Cooper for her stand against sexist online abuse suffered by her and other leading women MPs during the general election. In a speech to Labour Party conference she said “unless misogyny on the internet is challenged, more women’s voices will be silenced, and more women will be oppressed or feel prevented from […]


This Conference notes: Over a woman’s lifetime sanitary products cost more than £5000 with women spending around £13 every month. Many young women, including those menstruating for the first time are unable to access or afford sanitary products. This can have a major impact on women’s and girls physical, mental wellbeing and confidence. It is […]


Conference there was much debate during the Referendum Campaign about returning power to the Parliament in Westminster if we voted to leave the EU. Control over our laws, it was argued, would be returned to our Houses of Parliament and all our laws would be debated by our democratically elected Members of Parliament. There was […]

Supporting members with fibromyalgia

Conference notes that Fibromyalgia is a much misunderstood condition that predominantly impacts on women, with some research suggesting 90% of those affected are women, aged between 20 to 50 years. Conference further notes that this condition is difficult to diagnose and difficult to manage which brings huge challenges especially for those women who want and […]

Support for Women suffering with Mental Health

UNISON recognises that the excessive pressure of an increasingly demanding work culture in the UK is one of the biggest challenges to the mental health of our members. If you look around your surroundings whether at home, at work or in your social life, how many women do you feel are suffering from a mental […]


Conference welcomes the work initiated by UNISON’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) group to begin to make UNISON’s organisation, events, policies, systems and good practice advice inclusive of non-binary members. Conference is concerned about scare-mongering media coverage of some organisations’ moves towards non-binary inclusion. This coverage has suggested that non-binary inclusion represents an attempt […]


WOMEN TRAVELLING SAFELY Conference is extremely concerned that women are feeling increasingly vulnerable when travelling in their daily lives, using public transport. Recent British Transport Police figures show 1,448 offences against women were reported on public transport in 2016-17 – which is a significant increase from previous years. Many were sexual assaults. Also, many of […]

Disabled women forced into marriage

Conference notes that 86% of cases referred to the government’s forced marriage unit involve women, and that the abusive consequences for women with learning disabilities are likely to be severe. Whilst it is possible that the family believe that their action in arranging a marriage without consent will protect their child, build strong family ties […]

Women and Mate Crime

Conference welcomes the work that has previously been done by UNISON on hate crime. However, “mate crime” is less well recognised. Whilst there is no statutory definition of a ‘mate crime’, according to the Welsh government it is the term given to ‘the befriending of people, who are perceived by perpetrators to be vulnerable, for […]

Effective rights for part time and flexible workers.

Conference notes that there is now a legal right for any worker to request flexible working. However it is not clear that it has resulted in any significant improvement in access to flexible working for women, who represent the majority of people who request flexible working. This is set to increase as women have to […]

Mentoring and Developing Women

Unison is committed to proportionality for women but the reality is that in many branches this does not happen. By the time women have done their jobs, looked after the children and their homes, checked on their elderly parents and helped with homework, there is little time to sit and map out what they need […]

More and more cuts mean refuges can provide less and less!

Since the implementation of the Tory government’s policy of austerity, significant cuts to services have been experienced across all sectors. The impact of this is not least felt by those services dedicated to providing support, safe spaces and sanctuary for women who have experienced domestic violence. Refuge services across the country have been decimated by […]

Domestic Abuse in the Black Community

All women can experience violence from men they know, irrespective of their nationality, religion, ethnicity, culture, social class, age, sexuality or dis/ability. Evidence suggests that prevalence of male violence is similar across all socio-economic and cultural groups. Domestic Abuse is still happening in Black communities and is on the increase due to job cuts, women’s […]

Lack of participation of Black women in UNISON

Conference, women make up more than 70% of UNISON members. According to Rule D.1.4, UNISON is committed to fair representation and proportionality. However, in the public sector where many of our members are Black women, we see very few Black women represented at branch, regional and national level; despite statistics telling us that Black people […]