Policies on dealing with abusive customers in call centres

Conference notes that many energy members work in call centres and operational centres where they take calls from operational colleagues and customers. While most callers are reasonable, there is always a proportion that are unreasonable and some who are extremely abusive. In workplaces with generally high levels of stress, this can be intolerable. People who […]

The continuing drift from RPI to CPI and the impact on pay.

This conference notes the continuing desire by employers in the water sector to move away from RPI and embrace CPI when negotiating pay. Excuses abound, from the employers, to explain the reasoning to change to CPI. One of the main excuses being given, is the regulator Ofwat’s changes to the method used to increase consumer […]

Feeling Good in the WET Service Group

Conference welcomes the fact that more conversations are being held around the issues of mental health, however, for many it is still a taboo subject and for others a painful subject. This however does not stop the effect it has on people, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, beliefs. Mental health does not discriminate and […]

LGBT Mental Health Workplace Initiatives

Conference notes that there have been some staff wellbeing initiatives by employers in the Water, Environment and Transport service group related to mental health support, these are not consistent and there is still further to go for employee wellbeing. Conference recognises that at least one in four of us will experience mental health problems at […]

UNISON Activists and Mental Health

Conference is concerned to note that increasingly both branch activists and lay officials are finding themselves suffering extreme stress and anxiety when dealing with the levels of case load that they are presented with. In some cases representatives in WET have been placed under extreme personal pressure by employers. Conference notes that these pressures on […]

Training Mental Health First-Aiders in Energy Workplaces

Conference notes that since 1981, workplaces have been required to provide adequate and appropriate first aid equipment, facilities and people, to ensure that employees can be given immediate help if they are injured or taken ill at work. Yet in 2019, there is still no statutory requirement for employers to provide mental health first aid […]

Fair representation of Black people in the recruitment process

In 2009, the Department for Work and Pensions embarked on an experiment to understand the scarcity of non-white faces in top managerial posts in UK organisations. 2,000 fake job applications were created in response to 1,000 real vacancies across multiple sectors, professions and pay grades. Similar CVs – one with a “traditional Anglo-Saxon” name and […]

Utility and Energy Industry Privatisation

Many members within the above industries no longer have the luxury of a Defined Benefits (DB) pension and are relying on a much inferior Direct Contributions Pension scheme for their retirement. A lot of these workers have used the Share Save and Share Incentive Plan (SIP) share schemes within these companies to subsidise the shortfall […]

We Are Still Standing

This conference fully recognises the huge impact 10 years of austerity have had on the lives of our women members and their families. However there have been many success stories across our service groups in UNISON where our women members have had victories. Some of these may be small or large victories but all demonstrate […]

Improving Women Workers Protection Against Sexual Harrassment

Conference recognises the work that UNISON has undertaken on the issues of sexual harassment, particularly the joint research in 2018 with the London School of Economics and Political Science and the University of Surrey on the levels of sexual harassment in the police force. Sexual harassment in the workplace is nothing new. Attacks against women […]

End Discrimination in State Reciprocal Pension Arrangements for Black women

Conference is seriously concerned that Black women workers face a triple whammy of discrimination in the Labour market, • disadvantage in getting decent and well paid jobs • destitution in retirement caused by low pay, an ethnic and racial pay gap • lack of access to good occupational pensions, This is additionally heightened if you […]

SHOW TRANSPHOBIA THE RED CARD

Conference, we are deeply disturbed by the rise in transphobia towards trans women during and following the recent consultation regarding the Gender Recognition Act (GRA). Whilst we recognise everyone is entitled to their own view, hate must not infiltrate our union. Conference welcomes the UNISON stance of supporting self-identification, but much work is still needed […]

Domestic Violence – Time for UNISON to Take Action

Ever week more than two women are killed by current or ex-partners and figures are sadly rising. Currently one in four women in the UK will experience domestic violence at some point in their lives. All research indicates that in an economic recession, domestic violence and abuse increases yet meanwhile the Government imposed austerity cuts […]

ASK FOR ANGELA – IT COULD SAVE YOUR LIFE

Conference notes that ‘Ask for Angela’ is a scheme instigated in Lincolnshire County Council in 2016, which has been endorsed and rolled out in other cities in the UK. The initiative provided a mechanism where women, who feel unsafe, uncomfortable or threatened on a date or a night out can approach the staff at the […]

Period necessity, not a Luxury

Conference notes that a motion on ‘period poverty’ was passed at the 2018 national women’s conference. Conference is pleased that since then, Scotland and Wales have committed themselves to providing free sanitary products to schools. This is a very positive move and example. However, conference feels this does not go far enough, we believe that […]