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 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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

LOCAL GOVERNMENT PENSIONS – GOVERNANCE ARRANGEMENTS

Conference notes that the government is proposing new Local Government Pension Scheme investment regulations and asset pooling. Whilst there could be advantages in the pooling of LGPS funds, should this go forward, the proposal also gives new power to the government to decide where council pension funds make investments. As such, Conference fully endorses UNISON’s […]

Nepal Earthquake

Composite A NEPAL EARTHQUAKE The Nepal Himalayan earthquake struck on the morning of 25th April 2015 at 11.56, killing more than 7,000 people. A 7.8 magnitude earthquake, the worst for 81 years. The earthquake triggered an avalanche on Mount Everest, killing at least 19 people, making it the deadliest day on the mountain in history. […]

Age Discrimination in Higher Education

With rising pension ages both in the State and Employers Pension Scheme, Higher Education will see an increase in the age of its workforce. The Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful to discriminate against employees because of their age. Age discrimination can impact on someone’s confidence, job prospects, financial situation and quality of life. Older […]

Information Is Power

This Conference believes that the growth of privatisation and outsourcing in Higher Education presents a major challenge not just to the provision of services, but also to our ability to organise the workforce effectively. This Conference believes that the service group’s response to this challenge must be to support branches seeking to resist privatisation and […]

Control of Risk and Hazardous Substances in Higher Education

Conference notes that Health and Safety has not been exempt from the government’s austerity cuts agenda. The continued drive to “cut red tape” has brought changes to both the way work environments and hazardous substances are classified. Conference welcomes the initiative to standardise substance labelling worldwide and agree that when it comes to health and […]

Equality rights and collective agreements in higher education

Conference notes that it was our union’s national collective bargaining that established many equality protections long before they were enshrined in law. For example, our predecessor unions secured recognition of same sex partners for the purposes of workplace benefits before workplace discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation was banned and many years before the first […]

University wholly owned subsidiary companies

Conference, higher education employers are increasingly using the creation of wholly owned subsidiary companies to transfer support staff to deliver services. This is being used as a way to externalise staff for the purpose of creating a two-tier workforce to undermine the terms and conditions of new workers and placing the pensions and other contractual […]

“Impact of Trade Union Bill on Higher Education”

Conference notes that the Trade Union Bill currently going through Parliament is the biggest attack on workers’ rights and civil liberties in a generation. The headline requirement of a 50% turnout for a strike ballot is well known but there are other more insidious and pernicious sections that will fundamentally affect the way that Trade […]

Defending Trade Union Rights in Higher Education

This conference notes: 1)The current political climate makes trade union activists more vulnerable to victimisation. 2)The Trade Union Bill being presented to parliament in autumn 2015 represents a significant attack on trade union rights. 3)That there is no longer a legal right for employees to be accompanied by a trade union representative at flexible working […]