POWER FOR OLDER AND VULNERABLE PEOPLE

Conference welcomes the initiative of Northern Powergrid, EON and others in setting up a Priority Service Register of elderly, infirm or disabled people who require extra support during power cuts. Conference instructs the National Retired Members’ Committee, to publicise this service and requests the NEC and other relevant bodies to encourage all other utility providers […]

CARE IN THE HOME

Conference deplores the continued use of the 15 minute slots used by social care providers and others who provide care in the home for elderly and vulnerable people. Conference notes the UNISON report, Suffering Alone at Home, issued as part of the Save Care Now Campaign in January 2016 which included the result of a […]

SAVE CARE NOW

Conference welcomes the continuing progress being made with UNISON’s Ethical Care Charter and the broader campaign rebranded ‘Save Care Now’. Social care budgets in England have been slashed by £2.68 billion in the last three years. The government claims the 2% precept English councils have been permitted to add to Council Tax will raise £2 […]

A LIVING PENSION

Conference notes that many older people are living well below the poverty level, which at present is £178 per week. The UK State Pension is rated as one of the worst in Europe. Pensions are not benefits but are in fact deferred wages from previous National Insurance payments and deductions from work and taxable income. […]

A TAX FREE STATE PENSION

This Conference regrets that there is no automatic notification to HMRC to adjust tax codes to account for the receipt of State Pension. Despite low occupational pensions, the receipt of State Pension frequently puts retired members above the level of personal allowance (£11,000 for 2016/17) and therefore liable for payment of tax. It is everyone’s […]

END OF LIFE WITH DIGNITY

Conference notes that retired people in later life face challenges not previously encountered due to longer life expectancy enabled by medical advances. The Dignified Code produced by National Pensioners Convention calls for individuals to have freedom and choice for personal wishes to be implemented when individuals are no longer able to express themselves. Conference recognises […]

WALKING FOR PENSIONERS

It is widely recognised that walking is an activity that has great health benefits for pensioners. It is free, available to everyone and can be a pleasant social recreation. Medical advice is that walking can improve balance, strengthen muscles and reduce the risk of falls. Living Streets is the national charity that stands up for […]

DISCRIMINATION AGAINST RETIRED PEOPLE

Our 2014 Conference instructed the National Retired Members Committee and the National Executive Council to resist moves to make access for retired people to goods, services benefits and social communications available only via the internet. Sadly this process continues with many service providers such as banks, building societies, energy providers and travel companies only offering […]

DON’T CUT CARE

Day to day tasks that many of us take for granted – like getting dressed, using the toilet, washing, making a meal, or getting out to the shops – can be almost impossible for many of our members without help. Older people should be able to live well, not just survive and the right care […]

FIGHT AGAINST THE ABOLITION OF ATTENDANCE ALLOWANCE

Conference will doubtless be aware of the proposals by the government to devolve Attendance Allowance (AA) to local authorities. This would shift the responsibility for welfare policy from central to local government, representing one of the biggest shifts of resources within the welfare state for 25 years. At present AA is paid to 1.5 million […]

RETIRED MEMBERS AT SOG CONFERENCES

Following the rule change at National Delegate Conference 2014 Conference appreciates the inclusion of retired members at self-organised group (SOG) conferences and our involvement in this important aspect of UNISON’s structure. However Conference is concerned that, unlike all other groups attending SOG conferences, retired members are the only group not entitled to submit motions and […]

TICKETLESS TRAIN TRAVEL

Conference is concerned to learn that the rail industry is planning to replace paper train tickets with smartphone technology within three years and the impact this will have on older/elderly travellers who it is feared will be subsidising younger generations. Campaign group Railfuture has warned that elderly people who do not have smartphones and will […]

RURAL BUS SERVICES

Conference is concerned at the government cuts to councils for bus services, £27m in the current year and the impact this will have on rural communities who depend on bus services to get around. Rural bus services are being wiped out in many areas of England and Wales due to cuts in subsidies. Described by […]

RETIRED MEMBERS AND THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT PENSIONS SCHEME

Since the implementation of the proposals of the 2011 Lord Hutton enquiry the significant changes to the Local Government Pension Scheme have produced a knock on effect that affects existing pensioners and those with deferred benefits as well as our current serving colleagues. Putting to one side the imposition of higher contributions and later retirement […]

EQUAL RIGHTS OVER INHERITANCE

Conference notes that in a recent survey, 51% of the population prefer to remain living together in long-term relationships without feeling the need to go through a ceremony of marriage. If UNISON members reflect society, then this would mean over half a million members, including retired members, will find themselves in this position. There is […]