Conference regrets that in his March 2008 Budget, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, again failed to increase the basic state pension to restore its value if the link to average earnings had not been broken by Margaret Thatcher’s Conservative Government. Pensioners should have an immediate rise now to restore the pension value and […]


At the 2007 Retired Members’ Annual Conference, an Emergency Motion was carried, with the third highest support, calling for a single Government Minister for responsibility for the Elderly. Since then a Commissioner for the Elderly has been appointed for Wales, by the Welsh Assembly, with responsibility for ensuring all aspects for the elderly receive appropriate […]


The age addition to the over 80s was first introduced in 1971. The value was set at 25p representing 5% of the weekly State Pension of £5. It was a welcome addition. If it had risen relative to the State Pension it would now be worth about £4.50 a week. The mighty amount of 25p […]


This conference recognises that the government’s simplification of dental charges was a worthy aim. However, it has recently been announced that dental charges paid by NHS patients have increased by over £1 million per week. There are three bands of charging and it would appear that many treatments are charged at the highest band of […]


Conference has been appalled to read in the press that a retired couple elected to commit suicide rather than face being separated into different care homes when one partner becomes unable to care for the other. It is unacceptable that couples who’ve been together for most of their lives are separated at a time when […]


This Retired Members’ Conference deplores the inequality in Social Care in the Community. Having closed Old People’s Homes and promising that this was so that the money could be used to assist people in their own homes, it appears to be another postcode lottery as to what assistance is given and to what is free […]

Strategic Service Delivery Partnerships/Shared Services

Conference notes that the government is promoting Strategic Service-delivery Partnerships (SSP), Public Private Partnerships (PPP) and the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) in local government. We are concerned that these policies will have a detrimental impact on our members’ terms and conditions of employment. The roll out of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health […]


Conference notes that 3.5 million older people in the UK live alone due to factors which include bereavement and social isolation. Women are particularly affected as they are more likely than men to be widowed e.g. 3 in 5 women aged 75 and over live alone. Conference further notes that for single persons or persons […]

New Labour: What do we get for our money

Conference recognises that UNISON members are increasingly angry at the continued onslaught on public services, workers jobs, wages and conditions by the New Labour government and its policies. Conference also notes that in 2005 Conference agreed to call on UNISON Labour Link to publish the voting record of the UNISON groups of MPs. It is […]


Conference condemns the continuing violence and abuses against trade unions, social movements, and civil society organisations in Colombia. Colombia continues to be one of the most dangerous places to be a trade union activist. More than 3,500 trade union activists have been killed in the past 15 years, many have been disappeared, arrested and tortured […]

Public Services

Conference believes that changing political and economic circumstances make the case for sustained investment in quality public services delivered by well-trained and fairly rewarded public sector employees even more important. Conference notes that when given the option, as in Scotland and Wales, voters will support policy programmes that seek to strengthen and renew public services […]

Supporting Trade Unions in South Africa and the Region

Conference congratulates Nelson Mandela on the occasion of his 90th birthday, which is on 18 July 2008. Many people and organisations are marking his birthday in 2008 as part of wider celebrations of South Africa’s struggle for liberation from apartheid, the successful establishment of a representative and participatory democracy and recognition of those who sacrificed […]


The National Executive Council congratulates those branches and regions that have engaged in successful national and regional organising campaigns and notes that organising must remain central to the work of the union. The National Executive Council further notes that over the past five years the organising approach has led to a significant rise in the […]

The NHS at 60

As the National Health Service prepares to celebrate its 60th birthday in July 2008, conference welcomes the fact that its founding principles remain substantially intact. Despite government policies designed to drive more and more of the health service into private hands, the service is still largely publicly controlled, free at the point of need and […]

Local Services

Conference notes the 2007 Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act and the subsequent statutory guidance. This institutes new systems of delivering local public services in England affecting our members in Local Government, health, education, policing, transport and other areas. It also affects all our members as local citizens. Conference welcomes the increased co-ordination […]