Root and Branch

With a static or decreasing number of members in our branches we need to review how we organise within the Water, Environment and Transport Service Group (WET). As moves are made to change our branches we need to find a structure that suits us before one is imposed. There seems to be a coordinated effort […]

Pension Fund Trustees

Conference notes: a) Many funded pension schemes include provision for member nominated trustees. b) The financial crisis has highlighted the need for appropriate oversight and responsible management of workers capital. c) Proposed changes to the Local Government Pension Scheme are likely to extend the rights of workers to be represented on pensions committees; d) In […]

Review of Organisation and Branch Structure in the Environment Agency

Conference notes that: a) The existing branch structure within the Environment Agency was established at the time that the Environment Agency was created and was based largely on water company boundaries. b) The structure of the Environment Agency has changed significantly since this time and concern has been expressed that certain bargaining groups are no […]

Support for Local Government Pension Fund Board Members

Conference fully supports the Unison campaign for transparency and better governance with regard to Local Authority Pension boards. It also supports the encouragement of Unison members to become Member Nominated Representatives (MNRs) on those boards. The performance of Pension funds are currently under review. Members of Local Government Pension Funds need a voice on these […]

School Support Staff deserve our support

Conference we acknowledge the success of the national celebration of teaching and classroom assistants, held on 29 November 2013. The day of celebration promoted the work teaching assistants (TAs) and classroom assistants do and the incalculable benefits they bring to pupils across the country. It is a glowing recognition of the high esteem that TAs […]

Fighting Cuts and Redundancies in Local Government

Conference deplores the continuing cuts to local government resulting in mass redundancies and cuts to all Council Services. No Council Service is safe from the threats of cuts in funding. The workforce faces mass redundancies, and for those who retain a job within the employer there is an onslaught of attacks on terms and conditions. […]

NJC for Wales

Conference notes the inability of the current National Joint Council (NJC) to effectively negotiate on behalf of UNISON members. Primarily this is because of intransigence from the employers’ side buoyed by a hostile Westminster Government. Conference recognises that the current NJC arrangements restrict the ability to negotiate on a National basis within Wales with a […]

Pay Consultation Procedures

Conference notes that the Local Government Service Group’s pay consultation procedures were last revised by Conference in 2006. During that time, technological advances have meant that electronic means of voting and consultation are now available. Conference believes that the Service Group’s pay consultation procedures should enable the Service Group: 1)To consult all members in a […]

Contractual Rights

Conference views with alarm the increasing undermining of the employment law framework protecting members across the Service Group. Over half a million workers in local government and schools in England, Wales and Northern Ireland alone earn below the Living Wage and many of these are employed on contracts with very few protected rights. We have […]

Smoking in Customer’s Premises

This Water, Environment and Transport Conference 2014 welcomes legislation banning smoking in workplaces etc. One area that wasn’t addressed however and continues to give our members health and safety concerns is visiting customer’s residential properties whereby the occupiers’ smoke. We call upon the Water, Environment and Transport Executive to produce appropriate guidance which will include […]

Provision of Flu Jabs

Conference 2014 notes that some but not all employers in the water industry currently provide free flu jabs for their employees/our members. UNISON believes that this “best practice” should be adopted by all employers within our service group and calls upon the WET Executive in conjunction with Sector Committees to devise a negotiating guide on […]

Impact of restructuring and outsourcing on young workers

This conference believes that recent restructurings (such as at Middlesex University which has seen the creation of centralised student services, combining the services from 4 campuses into one) and outsourcing exercises, mean that many ‘entry-level’ jobs are severely reduced or disappear altogether. It is also often the case that these jobs are the first to […]

Excessive Workloads

Conference notes that in this current climate of Government cuts resulting in a reduction to services and jobs, professional support staff are experiencing many challenges within the workforce. Since 2008 government funding cuts have become more savage; ministers have publicly called for more to be done for less across the entire public sector and specifically […]

Low proportion of Black people in Senior Management Positions in Higher Education

Conference notes that in the UK there are 168 Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). Research conducted by the Equality Challenge Unit (ECU) reports that Black people represents 8.6 per cent of higher education academic staff and 6.9 per cent of professional support staff. Conference is aware that in the UK the Higher Education context has changed […]

Privatisation and Shared Services in Higher Education

Conference notes the continued promotion of shared services and privatisation of higher education by the Coalition Government. Evidence from the outsourcing and marketisation of public services suggests that in many cases additional costs are incurred and, increasingly, public sector organisations are looking to in-source services in order to achieve greater efficiency and better value for […]