Properly Fund Our Environmental Protection Agencies.

This conference notes that the ambitious environmental rhetoric used by all governments in the UK stands in direct opposition to the long-term fall in resources and support for the country’s environmental protection agencies which regulate and enforce environmental legislation. Why action is needed: For over a decade, our environmental protection agencies have been subject to […]

Trans equality in WET – louder and prouder!

The toxic debate ignited by the United Kingdom government’s consultation on reforming the Gender Recognition Act underlined the importance of our union, including branches in the Water, Environment and Transport service group, supporting and representing our Trans members effectively. Attacks on Trans rights have escalated further in the past year. There has been a sustained […]

Changes to the Constitution of the Water, Environment and Transport (WET) Service Group

Conference notes that the proposed revisions to the WET constitution have been overseen by the WET Executive and in particular by the policy sub-group, which is made up of representatives of all WET sectors. The key changes to the constitution can be found on: a. Page 2, sub-section 3.3: Sector seats reduced to 3 instead […]

Net zero and LGBT+ members

Conference recalls that the “Net Zero” motion passed at the 2021 WET conference called for the service group to work with all appropriate stakeholders in UNISON to promote policies that support a net zero strategy, including proper funding for a ‘Just Transition’ and a significant increase in employment in WET alongside new skills and training […]

Make 2022 the Year of Disabled Workers in WET workplaces

Conference notes that UNISON has declared 2022 the year of disabled workers, which is a great opportunity for WET branches to organise, bargain and campaign on the issues that matter to our disabled members and to increase recruitment and retention as a result. WET branches can use 2022 to highlight the experience of our disabled […]

UNISON recognition by Defra

A number of posts within the Environment Agency have been transferred to the Department for Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) over the past few years. Also, some new Environment Agency vacancies are advertised as Defra posts. UNISON has strong representation on behalf of our members in the Environment Agency. 1)We are entitled to elect representatives […]

Public Transport in the Post-Covid Era

As we emerge from the pandemic, usage of buses is 70-80% of the 2019 level. The figures for rail travel and tram journeys are slightly below that level. Transport companies are facing greater staff shortages than at any time during the pandemic. This is a result of staff leaving for alternative jobs, such as Heavy […]

Mental health of key workers in the Water Industry

Conference, during the COVID-19 pandemic water industry workers started to hear the terminology that they were key workers. Conference notes the huge impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health, whether on staff working under stressful conditions, people isolated from friends and family by lockdown measures, the physical impact of the virus itself, or the […]

Encouraging STEM subject study to increase numbers of women working in technical roles in WET

Research shows that at GCSE level engagement in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects has a broadly similar gender split. At this level female students are achieving higher or equal average A*-C grades compared to males. At A Level this drops off with a higher number of males taking up STEM subjects, for example […]

Transport – A Strategic Utility

Conference notes that Transport for Greater Manchester is on the road to introducing franchised bus services across the region, putting it in line with Transport for London. Although franchising is infinitely better than the feral free market that dominates public transport across most of the country, it is only a commissioning process – which leaves […]

WET Climate Crisis – Doing Our Bit

The world is facing a terrible threat, not only affecting our way of life and those of the billions across the globe, but also animal and plant life – as witnessed by the destruction of coral reefs due to ocean warming and drought and bush fires destroying hundreds of hectares of woodland. The water industry, […]

Safety of UNISON members attending reservoir incidents

This Water, Environment & Transport Conference notes that during the spring, summer and autumn UNISON members are regularly asked to attend anti-social incidents at reservoirs in their roles as Catchment Controllers. Of particular concern are out of hours call outs to deal with drunken behaviour usually but not exclusively by youths who can be under […]

Dumping of sewage by Water Companies in watercourses

Water, Environment & Transport Conference 2022 is appalled by the regular dumping of raw sewage in watercourses by Water Companies. Conference welcomes the recent fine of £90m to Southern Water for totally unnecessary pollution of beaches in the South of England and hopes this will act as a deterrent for other Water Companies to do […]

Hybrid working good or bad or a 3-tier workforce?

Water, Environment & Transport Conference 2022 notes that as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic some employers have introduced “hybrid working” arrangements for some of its employees. This is not to be confused with the right to apply for flexible working! Some of our members see hybrid working as a benefit as this gives the […]

Contractual Sick Pay Campaign

Conference recognises the huge efforts made right across our region to protect and safeguard our members during the Covid-19 pandemic – this mobilisation was particularly evident when as a region we collectively demanded sufficient protections for our members in the event they were off work due to any Covid-19 related absence. This was no more […]