Location tracking and Telematics in Water, Environment and Transport

Over the past decade, many employers in water, environment and transport have introduced tracking or “Telematics” technology in some form. This technology can track the location and movement of both vehicles and individuals in real-time, providing statistical and geo-locational information. Conference acknowledges that there can be some benefits regarding health and safety when this technology […]

The Environment Agency and major flooding incidents

Conference commends the incredible amount of hard work carried out by Environment Agency employees, including many UNISON members, (and employees from other organisations with flood relief responsibilities) during the flooding which took place in the final days of 2015 and the beginning of 2016. As a service group we are very proud that our members […]

A stronger, growing Passenger Transport Forum

Over the last year UNISON has done a huge amount of work to save the Passenger Transport Forum (PTF) as a functioning negotiating body. In 2015, Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) management gave notice to exit the negotiating element of the PTF, citing a need for greater “flexibility.” UNISON has a proud tradition of defending […]

Continuing to increase the participation of Black members in WET

Conference notes the resolution from last year’s WET conference to look at increasing Black member participation in the service group. When looking at measurements of engagement such as representation on branch and national committees and attendance at service group and Black members’ conferences the activism levels of Black members in WET remains an area of […]

Facility time

Conference, these are incredibly turbulent times in the public sector, especially those employers in the Water Environment and Transport Service Groups. Conference motions continue to reappear especially those of facility time, outsourcing and privatisation. Conference the nature of the barriers facing disabled workers is so diverse and complex this can affect how disabled people are […]

Stonewall workplace equality index

Conference notes that the charity Stonewall produces an annual workplace equality index, which it describes as an evidence-based benchmarking tool used by employers to assess their achievements and progress on lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) equality in the workplace. From 2016, they have pledged to also assess achievements and progress on transgender equality within the […]

Equal pensions for WET workers

Conference welcomes the growing recognition of same sex partnerships, including the 2005 Civil Partnership Act and the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Acts that came into force in England and Wales and in Scotland in 2014. However, conference echoes UNISON’s condemnation of the inequality entrenched in these laws with regard to surviving partner workplace pensions. The […]

Working Time Regulations and the Water Industry

Conference notes that Working Time Regulations stipulate that workers must have: At least a twenty minute break if they work more than six hours a day; At least eleven hours rest between working days, and; at least an uninterrupted twenty four hour rest without any work each week or an uninterrupted forty eight hours without […]

Negotiating workplace domestic abuse policies

Conference notes that domestic abuse has been demonstrated to have a significant impact on business productivity and the UK economy. Government statistics demonstrate that: i. 1 in 5 women each year take time off work because of domestic abuse. ii. 2 in every one hundred will lose their jobs iii. of those who remain in […]

The impact of pension changes on workers in the WET sector

Conference notes that from 6 April 2016 the Basic State Pension and Second State Pension (S2P) will end and be combined/ replaced by a new State Pension. The majority of members in the WET service group are currently paying reduced rate NI Contributions because they are in a work place pension scheme that is better […]

Protecting Pensions in the Water Industry

This WET Conference notes that adverse changes have recently occurred to defined benefit (final salary) pension schemes in Severn Trent, Dwr Cymru, Northumbria Water and United Utilities as a minimum. The Water Industry has been a licence to make money since privatisation in 1989 when Thatcher wrote off all the debts and remains a monopolised […]

Ensuring the Living Wage for all in the Water Industry

WET Conference congratulates the Water Industry Sector Committee and the Executive for the work done to date in trying to ensure all within the Water Industry whether directly employed or via contract are paid the Living Wage. It cannot be right whereby two people sat side by side are paid different amounts, one the Living […]

Mental Health in WET Workplaces

This WET Conference congratulates the Environment Agency North West branch in running a pilot course backed by United Utilities branch in aiming to address mental health issues in workplaces covered by the WET service Group. Particularly in call centre environments, mental health can be a major issue caused by unrealistic timescales placed on employees including […]

Securing Adequate Funding for Flood Defences

WET Conference 2016 will remember the devastation caused by floods in late 2015 in Cumbria, Lancashire and Yorkshire in particular which had a devastating effect on the general public including many UNISON members both as employees and victims of the floods. Inadequate resources by this Tory Government have played a major part in flood defences […]

Adding insult to injury – the autumn budget statement

Conference notes with concern that the 2015 Comprehensive Spending Review, published on 25 November 2015, does nothing to improve the financial stability and position of women, who have so far borne the brunt of the government’s austerity measures. A detailed assessment by the Women’s Budget Group, which was critical of the government’s failure to conduct […]