Encouraging More Women to be Active in UNISON

Austerity has resulted in severe jobs losses within the public sector and the disappearance of many essential services. As women make up a core part of the workforce, and are also the main users of many public services, they have been impacted disproportionally. It is therefore essential that women are at the forefront of fighting […]

What’s Europe ever done for us?

The government has announced that, by the end of 2017, they will conduct a referendum on whether the UK should remain within the EU. Conference acknowledges that years of recession, soaring unemployment, and lacklustre leadership have left the public with little faith in the EU and its ability to improve the lives of ordinary working […]

Women’s access to justice

Conference notes with concern the impact that successive government policies are having on women’s access to justice. For those women experiencing domestic violence, access to justice means: • receiving a timely, safe and understanding response to domestic violence from the police; • ensuring that civil remedies, such as injunctions, are used appropriately and are offered […]

The refugee crisis

The government’s Immigration Bill is a draconian piece of legislation designed to criminalise and stigmatise immigrants and undocumented people. It is part of a wider, ongoing Government attempt to appear tough on immigration to an increasingly sceptical public. While millions of people were moved after seeing the washed up body of 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi, the […]

Women’s Voice in Local Politics

Women are under-represented in politics. The lack of women in Westminster is increasingly reported but the lack of women in local government is very often overlooked. According to the Fawcett Society women make up only 32% of local councillors in England and 24% in Northern Ireland. Only 12.3% of local authority leaders in England are […]

Maternity Discrimination

This conference notes That key research published by the Equality and Human Rights Commission in July 2015, Pregnancy and Maternity Related Discrimination and Disadvantage highlighted ongoing problems for pregnant women in the workplace, for example it discovered of the women surveyed: • One in 9 mothers were dismissed or made compulsorily redundant whilst others were […]


Conference will be aware that the changes to legal aid introduced in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, which requires women to provide evidence of their domestic abuse through providing evidence of domestic violence in the previous two years. Evidence can consist of a conviction, police caution, protective injunction, letter from […]

The true cost of childcare for Working Women

In the UK approximately 5.5 million working mothers of dependent children pay for child care. With increasing costs of childcare, other household bills and stagnant or reducing salaries, women are finding it harder and harder to stay in work. In the 2015 budget the government announced an increase of free childcare from 15 hours to […]

Now justice is only for those who can afford it

The British judicial system was based on the bedrock that justice must not only be done, but be seen to be done as well. It should not be a system where justice should be done only to those who are rich enough to afford it. But in the UK the Government‘s austerity measures are adversely […]


UNISON can be proud of the campaigning we have done to highlight and tackle the issue of in work poverty. The Worth It campaign took the message out to our communities and women members. Under the Government’s austerity measures it has been women and their families who have borne the brunt of their policies and […]

Appropriate Funding for Women’s Self Organisation

Conference notes with concern that constraints on branch finances are leading to some women not being encouraged or able to participate in women’s self-organised group activities. Conference notes with concern that financial constraints and controls at branch and regional level may be negatively impinging on women’s activism and as a consequence reducing the opportunities to […]

Equality, Power and Devolution

Conference notes that across the UK women remain massively underrepresented in the political and decision making processes that influence our lives, especially working class women. Conference further notes that women currently make up: o 29% of MP’s in the English Parliament o 40% of Welsh Assembly members o 35% of Scottish Parliament members o 19% […]

Impact of Austerity on UNISON Women

UNISON is a union of over 1 million women members. Due to the government’s austerity measures over the last 5 years many of these will have seen their standard of living fall and many will be living in poverty. Researchers show that by moving from a minimum wage to a living wage 4.8 million women […]

Save our newborns

Conference notes that Group B Strep is a potentially fatal infection for newborn babies. In fact, it is recorded as the biggest killer of newborns and that it colonises in the vagina of 22% of all women. Because the women are carriers rather than being infected by the bacteria there are no symptoms therefore this […]

The cuts are killing us

From the rise in domestic violence, to increased homelessness, benefit sanctions which have driven people with long term conditions into desperation and disabled women labelled as scroungers and vulnerable on the streets and in their homes – Austerity is a killing machine. Job losses and increased poverty leads to violent reactions that impact women and […]