Austerity and Our Local Economies

The North East is not alone in still feeling the increasing and cumulative effects of austerity since the financial crash of 2008 with continued cuts to public services and jobs. The cumulative effect of a lost decade of investment and wage growth across both public and private sectors is still being felt as the region […]

Attacks on Democracy

Conference notes that the current government have shown a disregard for democracy and civil society, including: 1) The introduction of individual voter registration and a subsequent decline in voter registration; 2) Boundary changes based on these lower levels of registration that disproportionately hit regions where the Conservative Party has few MPs; 3) The Lobbying Bill, […]

Don’t Silence the Occupation of Palestine

Conference is concerned at the introduction of new laws in Britain, the US and Israel, intended to silence those who campaign for the rights of the Palestinian people. In October 2015 the Conservative government announced they would introduce new rules “to stop politically-motivated boycott and divestment campaigns by town halls against UK defence companies and […]

Gateway to the Future: Stable and Sustainable Branch Resources

Conference welcomes the work of the Branch Resources Review and the National Executive Council report, Gateway to the Future: Stable and Sustainable Branch Resources. Conference agrees that the report and recommendations will secure the financial stability of the union, while giving immediate support to branches that are struggling to support members. Our branches are the […]

Equal pensions for WET workers

Conference welcomes the growing recognition of same sex partnerships, including the 2005 Civil Partnership Act and the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Acts that came into force in England and Wales and in Scotland in 2014. However, conference echoes UNISON’s condemnation of the inequality entrenched in these laws with regard to surviving partner workplace pensions. The […]

Defending Our Human Rights and Equality Protections

Conference condemns the Tory Government’s sustained attack on the rights of public service unions and workers – rights guaranteed under International Labour Organisation (ILO) conventions. The undermining of the rights of trade unionists violates civil liberties and human rights including the freedom of association and assembly. Conference is therefore not surprised but is appalled that […]

Stonewall workplace equality index

Conference notes that the charity Stonewall produces an annual workplace equality index, which it describes as an evidence-based benchmarking tool used by employers to assess their achievements and progress on lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) equality in the workplace. From 2016, they have pledged to also assess achievements and progress on transgender equality within the […]

CAMPAIGNING AGAINST LOW & LOWER PAY.

UNISON remains committed to gender equality within all our pay structures and we commend the highly successful on-going campaign financed and delivered by our organisation to achieve this end. At the same time low pay and lower pay appears to have been largely ignored by UNISON as a priority of our members and most development […]

Mental Ill- Health, Mental Health Related Illnesses and Awareness Monitoring.

The problems of mental ill-health and mental health related illnesses are some of the biggest difficulties facing our members at work today. When jobs are under threat, pay packets are being frozen and workloads are increasing, the mental health of employees is always likely to be affected. Over the last two decades, we have all […]

Working Time Regulations and the Water Industry

Conference notes that Working Time Regulations stipulate that workers must have: At least a twenty minute break if they work more than six hours a day; At least eleven hours rest between working days, and; at least an uninterrupted twenty four hour rest without any work each week or an uninterrupted forty eight hours without […]

The impact of pension changes on workers in the WET sector

Conference notes that from 6 April 2016 the Basic State Pension and Second State Pension (S2P) will end and be combined/ replaced by a new State Pension. The majority of members in the WET service group are currently paying reduced rate NI Contributions because they are in a work place pension scheme that is better […]

Negotiating workplace domestic abuse policies

Conference notes that domestic abuse has been demonstrated to have a significant impact on business productivity and the UK economy. Government statistics demonstrate that: i. 1 in 5 women each year take time off work because of domestic abuse. ii. 2 in every one hundred will lose their jobs iii. of those who remain in […]

The impact of state pension changes on workers in the Energy sector

Conference notes that from 6 April 2016 the Basic State Pension and Second State Pension (S2P) will end and be combined/ replaced by a new State Pension. The majority of members in the energy service group are currently paying reduced rate NI Contributions because they are in a work place pension scheme that is better […]

Negotiating workplace domestic abuse policies

Conference notes that the majority of victims of the most severe forms of domestic abuse – and therefore those who are most affected – are women. In the energy service group women account for around 75% of the membership, and this is therefore an issue which has a significant impact on our members in the […]

Local Government Trading Companies

Conference we know that many councils have now established local trading companies. As you know these trade as separate companies to the council, but are wholly owned by them. Within local UNISON branches we are told that the reasons behind these companies being established normally falls into two categories: 1)Service delivery model, where they do […]