Sharps injuries and ancillary staff

This conference would like to reiterate that within the NHS sharps injuries affect both clinical and non-clinical staff. Although injuries to nurses have understandably attracted the media attention (at least 4 UK nurses are known to have died from occupationally acquired blood borne viruses) cleaning staff are particularly at risk as it is they who […]

Health and welfare of ambulance members

The changing demands and nature of the ambulance service is threatening the health and welfare of UNISON ambulance service members. Our members accept that working for the ambulance service is a physically demanding and challenging role. However they also expect employers to do all they can to manage and where possible eliminate the risks to […]

UNISON – the union for ambulance staff

This conference notes the continued work of UNISON over the last twelve months on behalf of ambulance members including: • Supporting ambulance branches to recruit and retain members; • Promoting the profile of ambulance services and staff; • Developing a coherent position on strategic industrial relations and workforce issues whilst maintaining constructive partnership and working […]

The new operational services occupational group

Conference notes that the Ancillary and Maintenance and Administrative and Clerical sector committees will be merging to become the Operational Services occupational group. This new group covers a wide variety of different staff roles within the NHS all providing support services integral to high quality patient care. Many of our members within this occupational group […]

Challenging racism in the workplace

Conference notes with concern that recent research published this year by the University of Bradford which suggests that staff from Black backgrounds are “overrepresented in disciplinary procedures and that disciplinary processes are not being applied consistently within the NHS”. The finding that Black employees continue to face significant levels of discrimination and barriers to progression […]

Engaging with and influencing Health and Wellbeing Boards

Health and Wellbeing Boards (HWBs) are designed to be a forum for local commissioners across the NHS, public health and social care, elected representatives and patient representatives from local Health Watch to discuss how to work together to improve the health and wellbeing outcomes for the people of their area. They are intended to provide […]

The future of nursing

Conference notes that many health employers across the UK continue to target the nursing wages bill for cuts, and are using unsustainable tactics, such as freezing posts, not replacing registered nurses when they leave or retire and converting vacant registered nurse posts to lower grades and lower salaries. In the meantime, student nurses are being […]

National bargaining – a strong and united voice

Conference notes the importance of national bargaining in the health service to ensure the delivery of equal pay and equality in terms and conditions for all NHS staff. It is important for all of us, but particularly so for minority groups of health service staff and those at most risk of experiencing discrimination, such as […]

NHS Staff and the European Working Time Directive

Workers in the NHS have always worked long hours with minimal breaks and the safeguards introduced by the European working time directive have often been either ignored completely or not enforced in many areas due to being short staffed or excessive workloads. There is now a move from NHS organisations to finally come into line […]

Flexible working option for all

Conference notes that despite numerous attempts to ensure that employers have a consistent approach to dealing with flexible working requests, there are still widespread differences. As a significant number of health staff are shift workers, and therefore more likely to require flexible working patterns, it is important we are able to address this issue. Particularly […]

Promoting the organising agenda

Conference recognises that the day of action for Pensions Justice on 30th of November was a major success in mobilising UNISON NHS members. Conference notes that the build up to this day of action saw a sharp increase in recruitment as well as the drawing in to activity of many previously inactive members. Conference notes […]

Attacks on Agenda for Change in non-foundation trusts

Conference notes that there have been attempts to make substantial changes to Agenda for Change terms and conditions, mostly among foundation trusts, such as making all incremental progression dependent on high levels of attendance, compliance with training, etc or in other areas imposing incremental freezes on top of the national pay award freeze. Conference further […]

Regulation of Healthcare Assistants

UNISON reaffirms its position on regulation for Healthcare Assistants. While welcoming the move to regulate Healthcare Assistants, we remain concerned with the lack of progress in some areas and the fragmented approach across the UK. The NHS is increasingly reliant on Healthcare Assistants but as some high profile cases have shown there are huge variations […]

Community and trade union organising for health branches

Conference notes that UNISON is committed to models of reciprocal community organising and that these approaches in a health context necessarily involve seeking to forge alliances with service user and wider disability groups and social movements. UNISON should also be congratulated for the excellent booklet ‘Working with local communities to fight cuts and privatisation: a […]

Human Error and No Blame Culture

Health Conference notes that it is not unusual that NHS and other health care staff are subject to disciplinary action as a consequence of the reporting of adverse incidents which have resulted from human error. There is a pressing need to develop a process for dealing with adverse incidents that reserves disciplinary action for the […]