Hands off Universal Benefits

Conference opposes any attempts by Governments across the UK to cut universal benefits for older people such as the winter fuel payment, free bus pass, free prescriptions and free TV licences. These benefits are essential to ensuring a decent standard of living and social inclusion for millions of pensioners who face daily poverty, fuel poverty […]

Zero Hours Contracts and Impact on Black Workers i

Conference deplores the rise of the use of zero-hours contracts in local government. Zero hour contracts are a throwback to the sorry days of casual labour waiting at the dockside hoping to be picked out for work. Working hours can become unpredictable, meaning no guaranteed wage to help people pay their bills or plan for […]

Winter Fuel Allowance: Time for an Increase

Conference is very concerned that the Winter Fuel Allowance payments were included in the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne’s Budget statement on 19 March 2014, when he stated that benefits will be capped in 2015/16. The statistic (National Pensioners Convention) for the 2013/14 winter is that 31,000 pensioners died of cold-related diseases. The United […]

Threat to the Bus Pass and Universal Benefits

Conference is very concerned that the concessionary bus pass for pensioners is being attacked and no political party has stated that it will be retained after the 2015 election. Withdrawing the bus pass from pensioners will need another Act of Parliament (original Transport Act 2008) but that won’t stop this Government or any other one […]

Communications

The National Retired Members’ Committee continues to work to ensure that the UNISON website serves as an efficient means of communicating with over 166,000 Retired members. It is vital that members are provided with information about campaigns that they can get involved with and the activities being undertaken by UNISON. Conference notes that since the […]

The Challenge of Recruiting and Organising in a fr

Our NHS is facing the biggest threats in its 65 year history. The impact of the Health and Social Care Act is being felt across all four countries and austerity measures, reorganisations, funding cuts and freezes that are being imposed by the Westminster Government has led to increasing fragmentation of health services. Since 2013 when […]

The Disproportionate Impact of Cuts on Women

Conference values local government’s history as an important part of the gender equality movement, acting as a key employer for women. Women make up 65% of local government staff and many of those women are low-paid and working part-time. Women are also more likely to use public services than men, and use them more intensively […]

Zero Hours Contracts in the NHS

UNISON research into zero hours contracts shows that more than 40% of care workers are on these contracts. Activists are reporting that more employers are using zero hours contracts more widely across the NHS. This also includes operational service staff. Zero hours contracts are imbalanced and the employer reaps all the benefits. Members are asked […]

Campaign for Ambulance Workers Pension Retirement Age

Conference proposes that UNISON campaigns to bring front line ambulance workers pension retirement age in line with other emergency workers. Front line ambulance staff are soon to be expected to work until they are 67 years old, this is unrealistic bearing in mind the arduous and unpredictable nature of the work. Shift work and long […]

Supporting Outsourced Members

Conference notes the continuing trend for NHS Trusts to outsource services such as Learning Disability Services, to companies such as Thera, Creative Support, and others. Increasingly members who are transferred to such organisations under TUPE, have seen serious attacks on terms and conditions. In some cases, the transferred staff, on protected NHS terms and conditions, […]

Categorisation in the Ambulance Service

National guidelines state that at least 75% of the most serious Category ‘A’ 999 calls should be responded to within eight minutes (Red 1 target). But less than half of trusts are able to meet their target to reach the most critically ill patients within this time. These delays are caused by a range of […]

Registration for Healthcare Assistants

HCAs feel undervalued and under the spotlight. HCAs perform one of the most important caring roles; they provide the frontline fundamentals of care, including bathing, helping vulnerable people to eat and go to the bathroom with dignity. Statistics show that HCAs and other support worker roles deliver up to 60% of direct patient care and […]

Resisting Downbandings/Pay Cuts.

Conference notes with alarm that the downbanding of NHS workers’, jobs has increased nationwide as more and more Trusts come under financial pressure. The downbandings may take place under the guise of service or skill mix reviews but in reality they are most likely to result in workers doing the same job for less pay. […]

Be Safe Training

We congratulate UNISON for the work it has done after the publication of the Francis Public Inquiry into care failings at Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust. It is essential that we continue to prioritise the Be Safe training. We are encouraged that a small number of branches have volunteered to act as early implementer sites to […]

How We Want To Work – A Charter for the NHS Workforce

Conference recognises that in the run-up to the general election, all political parties will be setting out their policies on the NHS including the structures in the four countries and the ideological differences behind them; the different approaches to integration with social care, and outcomes for patients and the way that serious complaints are handled. […]