EU Exit – Protecting the Northern Ireland Peace Process

The current position of the UK Government for a ‘hard’ exit from the EU places the Northern Ireland peace process in severe jeopardy and has serious implications for the island of Ireland as a whole. This peace agreement received the consent of the majority of the people in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of […]

The Great Repeal Bill – Protecting Devolution

Conference notes that following the vote to leave the EU in June 2016 the UK Government has consistently shown a disregard for the views of the devolved administrations in relation to the protections necessary when leaving the EU. Conference notes the UK Government plans to introduce a ‘Great Repeal Bill’ designed to repeal the European […]

Challenging the Trade Union Act 2016

Conference continues to condemn the Trade Union Act 2016 in Great Britain and its various restrictive and draconian regulations to hamper the ability of unions to bargain and to advance pay and conditions in the workplace. In Wales the Act was opposed by the Wales Assembly Government and nearly every local council and health board […]

Standing together for LGBT equality

Conference believes UNISON’s championing of public services and public service values has never been more important. Conservative government austerity cuts have left public services reeling, struggling to meet ever rising demand from services users. Service user needs become greater and more complex as they struggle with financial insecurity due to stagnant or falling wages, redundancy […]

Organising and growing our membership in private contractors

Conference notes that despite UNISON’s necessary and continued campaigns against privatisation, the outsourcing of public services continues apace. Conference completely condemns this Tory government’s relentless attack on the public sector and continues to call on the government to properly fund publically delivered services. However, whilst privatisation remains a reality, conference also recognises that the union […]

Saving the LGPS and good pension schemes for our members

Conference is concerned that good pension provision is continuing to decline. Defined benefit pension schemes that guarantee pensions based on final salary or career average are under threat. The main reason employers give is increasing costs and risk of further increases of providing the benefits and increased employer contributions. In the public sector (for example […]

Defending our libraries

Conference notes with concern the ongoing closures of libraries and worsening pay and conditions of remaining library staff. Data released last December by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) shows that spending on local libraries has fallen by £25 million and 478 libraries have closed across England, Scotland and Wales since 2010. […]

Organising in homecare

Conference notes that members working in homecare suffer some of the worst working conditions in any sector in the UK, with widespread abuse of zero-hour contracts, breaches of minimum wage legislation, and non-payment of the time spent travelling between domiciliary care visits. Conference recognises the work done by UNISON at all levels to highlight these […]

Apprentices

Conference notes that: 1) The apprenticeship levy comes in from April 2017 and all employers, with a pay bill over £3 million each year, will need to pay 0.5% of their pay-bill to invest in apprenticeships – almost all further education (FE) colleges will be paying the levy. The growth in apprenticeships over the coming […]

Recruiting and organising Black members in the fragmented workforce

It is important that Black workers and members are equipped for the challenges within the changing and evolving landscape of the UK today. Conference recognises that a high proportion of Black workers eligible to join UNISON work in the fragmented workforce where they experience low pay and poor working conditions. Conference believes that recruitment is […]

Bullying of Black workers in the workplace

Conference notes that many local authority employers have anti-bullying and harassment policies in place. However, there are too many times when Black workers in the local government employers have reported experiences of bullying in the workplace. This conference also notes historical evidence from the TUC has shown that Black workers are reluctant to use the […]

Apprenticeships and new employers/new models of public service delivery

This conference notes that a range of new employers and models of service delivery are emerging in local government e.g. combined authorities, local authority trading companies, public authority mutuals, ‘Devo Manc’ etc. This conference also notes that these changes have profound implications for the local government service group bargaining and organising agenda on staffing, pay, […]

Pay – Tackling In-Work Poverty

Conference notes research by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation in December 2016 which showed that a record 3.8 million people – one eighth of the workforce – are below the poverty line despite being in work. This means that a shocking total of 7.4 million people, including 2.6 million children, are living in poverty despite being […]

Exiting the EU – A Fair Deal For Workers and Public Services

Conference notes that the triggering of Article 50 in early 2017 is a decision that affects working people, their families and communities in the UK, in the European Union and broader Europe. The Exiting the EU negotiations require that the government both seeks to leave the EU but also negotiates a new relationship and trade […]

Challenging Racism and Xenophobia

Conference is deeply alarmed at the rise in visible, expressed racism over the past year. Across the UK, racist attacks on Black communities and those perceived to be of migrant backgrounds rose dramatically in the aftermath of the EU referendum result. This legitimisation of public displays of prejudice has led to UNISON’s migrant worker members […]