Campaigning to Save Sure Start and Early Years Services

Conference notes the continued threat to Sure Start through imposed budget reductions nationally. There has been more than 500 Sure Start Children’s Centres closed, most during the first two years of this Coalition Government. While the Coalition Government’s continued austerity cuts are the catalyst for local councils to review the future of Sure Start Children’s […]

The Impact of Austerity on Women

Conference condemns the continued attack on public sector workers. In the last two years, over 631,000 jobs have been axed with a further 400,000 due to go before the 2015 general election. Women make up a large proportion of public sector workers and in some sectors twice as many women as men have lost their […]

Union Learning Representatives

Conference recognises the important work that Union Learning Representatives (ULR’s) do throughout the UK in both in promoting learning at work, signposting members towards further education, advising on basic skills and working with employers to increase the skills of the workforce. The main role is helping individuals to overcome barriers which may prevent them getting […]

Food Standards Agency (FSA) and Meat Inspection

Conference notes that the Food Standards Agency is too close to the food industry without being sufficiently robust in protecting independent meat inspection, despite the recent and ongoing horsemeat scandal. Conference recognises that de-regulation and privatisation is the preferred direction of travel of our government and the European Union (EU). This was clearly shown in […]

The Gender Agenda

Conference notes with dismay that cuts to pay and terms and conditions in local government are hitting women hardest across the UK. Local government is a highly gendered workforce – seventy-six per cent of National Joint Committee (NJC) workers are women, over half of all jobs are part-time and women carry out 90% of those […]

Rewiring Public Services and the Local Government Workforce

Conference believes UNISON must have a vision for the future of local government services as well as pay and conditions and that achieving workforce involvement and buy in to the development of that vision will be crucial. Conference is concerned that there is no real mention of the workforce in the Local Government Association (LGA) […]

Scotland’s Future

Conference notes the Scottish Government has published its White Paper on Independence, their proposal to promote a ‘Yes’ vote in the Referendum to take place on 18 September 2014. The document covers matters arising from Scotland becoming an independent country like currency and international relations, in addition, it sets out a policy prospectus if the […]

Local Government Conference

Local government is living through an unprecedented period of challenge and uncertainty. Conference acknowledges in this environment the need to share experiences and develop strategic direction has never been greater. Conference instructs the Service Group Executive (SGE) to investigate, with Regions and Branches, the pros and cons of changing the timing and format of Local […]

Synchronising Local Disputes

Across the Service Group local terms and conditions and those underpinned by sector-wide agreements reside in the bargain basement of public sector employment. Even where a statutory basis exists they are rarely above the minimum entitlement. Yet many employers, with overt encouragement from sector employer organisations, are choosing to use central government funding cuts to […]

Tri-borough, what next for Local Government and Equality Duty

The tri-borough initiative across Hammersmith and Fulham, Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea has seen a massive reduction in the workforce, despite saving numbers of front-line jobs under section 113. The sovereign Councils are now looking at discussion to harmonise the workforce in what we know will be an attack on our conditions of service and a […]

Training For Branches Who Employ Their Own Staff

Conference notes that more and more branches are likely to consider employing staff such as caseworkers, administrators and organisers to assist with the growing levels of work and the fragmentation of the public sector Conference believes that UNISON branches should be exemplary employers, follow ACAS best practice guidelines and provide good levels of support and […]

Combined Authorities

Conference deplores the cuts in funding from Central Government to Local Government. As a result of these cuts, groups of Councils are looking to become a combined authority. There is currently one combined authority in Greater Manchester, although by the end of April 2014 there could be another four such combined authorities in England. Such […]

NJC for Wales

Conference notes the inability of the current National Joint Council (NJC) to effectively negotiate on behalf of UNISON members. Primarily this is because of intransigence from the employers’ side buoyed by a hostile Westminster Government. Conference recognises that the current NJC arrangements restrict the ability to negotiate on a National basis within Wales with a […]

Cuts and Funding for Local Government

Conference is alarmed by David Cameron’s statement that Coalition government policy “…means something more profound. It means building a leaner, more efficient state. We need to do more with less. Not just now, but permanently” and by the further cuts to local government planned by George Osborne beyond 2015/16. Conference notes with alarm that: 1)Catastrophic […]

Administration of Medicines in Schools

Conference notes that discussions continue with governments across the UK on responsibility for administration of medicines and medical procedures in educational settings. Employees whose contract includes the administration of medicine and/or health care tasks should receive specific, regular training and be indemnified by their employer against any allegation of negligence, which enables them to feel […]