Homelessness

Conference recognises the increase in homelessness in recent years. This is most readily seen by the increasing numbers of rough sleepers in all parts of the country. However, the number of people living in over-crowded conditions, ‘couch surfing’ and in inappropriate and often unsafe situations has also increased. The UK government has no credible homelessness […]

Zero hours and Black workers

Recent news has reported that the number of people that are unemployed has hit a record low. What these statistics do not report is that a large proportion of this is due to the increase in zero hours contracts. Employers have increasingly been turning to zero hours contracts as part of the general attack on […]

Race Equality Act – How far have we come since 1968?

On 8 December 1965 the first Race Relations Act came into force in Britain. Prior to this, it was legal to discriminate against people because of the colour of their skin, and this act was the first in many equality legislation to promote non-discrimination and equality, the Act was amended in 1968. This year is […]

The UK is facing a future of Water Deficits – Is Re-Nationalisation the only sensible answer?

Conference notes that research for the Adaptation Sub-Committee’s (ASC) 2017 Climate Change Risk Assessment evidence report considered a range of possible scenarios to assess water availability in the UK up to the 2080’s. The research, by consultancy HR Wallingford, considered differing levels of climate change, population growth and efforts to adapt to the impacts of […]

The role of markets in delivering Water Services

Conference notes that Ofwat in their publication Water 2020 have declared an intention to look to promote markets to deliver services in Water Resources and Bio-resources. Following the collapse of Carillion and the ramifications on public services is it not clear that a ‘markets’ based strategy could have similar devastating consequences for both the public […]

WET e-learning – is it up to the Job?

Quality training and development is important to our members. Yorkshire Water recently closed its training centre in favour of pushing more e-learning onto desktop PCs in the workplace. The list of benefits to WET companies is endless. Massive cost savings are achieved by closing training centres, no course materials, no travel time, less work disruption […]

Health and Safety Reps standby

This conference notes the ever-increasing need for safety improvements in the WET sector. Yorkshire Water Branch would like the sector to adopt the approach being taking at Kelda where we have formed a health and safety representative’s standby rota. It has been designed for union health and safety reps to get called out to investigate […]

The push for upper quartile – The ignored impact on employees

As conference will be aware Ofwat is pushing forward it’s vision for the water sector commencing in 2020. A major part of this is to push competition between the water companies harder than before. The phrase ‘upper quartile’ in now bandied about as the place to be and those who are not ‘upper quartile’ will […]

The Push towards Homeworking – ‘Good or Bad’?

Conference is aware that homeworking has increased substantially in recent years and is only going to continue in the future, as sector WET companies continue to cut overheads, save space, encourage flexible working and require an agile workforce. Yorkshire Water are currently encouraging their workforce (office based) to consider working from home at least 1 […]

Equality e-Learning within WET companies

All employees regardless of age, ethnicity, sexual orientation and any disability are to be treated equally and have equal access to opportunities. They must have a sense of belonging at work. They must feel respected and valued for who they are and have a level of supportive energy and commitment from others so that they […]

Schedule E Political Fund Ballot

Schedule E: Political Fund Ballot 2. Delete: “ “the Certification Officer” means the Certification Officer for Trade Unions and Employer’s Associations whose address is 22nd floor, Euston Tower, 286 Euston Road, London NW1 3JJ.” And replace with: “ “the Certification Officer” means the Certification Officer for Trade Unions and Employer’s Associations whose address is Certification […]

Rule J The Political Fund

Delete the current Rule J and replace with: “J The Political Fund The rules of the Political Fund set out in sections 1-2 below apply to all members regardless of when they joined the Union. The particular rules which apply to members who joined the Union before 1st March 2018 are set out in section […]

Local Government and Devolution

Conference notes the ongoing devolution agenda across the UK nations – at national, regional and local government levels. While there are some welcome national government developments in relation to the Trade Union Act, health and social care integration and the treatment of the public service workforce in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, there are concerns […]

Inclusion in our union – improving equality outcomes

Equality and diversity in our union is vital. Whilst we have a lot to celebrate and are seen at the front edge of equality policy and organising for equality with our self organised groups, there continues to be significant equality developments within our union, across employers and in our members’ workplaces. There are higher proportions […]

Organising and growing our membership in the Private Contractors and Community

Conference notes that UNISON membership in Private Contractors and Community employers continues to grow due to both increased recruitment but also increased contracting. In 2017 recruitment in these areas now represents nearly 31% of all new joiners nationally. This proportion was matched almost exactly in the East Midlands, with around 6% joining from Community and […]