All eyes on the PM to give health staff a decent pay rise
Thousands of health workers across England, Wales and Northern Ireland will be looking to the Prime Minister to announce his decision on the long-awaited NHS pay rise in the coming days, says UNISON today (Wednesday). Ministers have repeatedly said they will await the recommendations of the NHS pay review body (on which they have attempted to set a 1% limit) before making an announcement on the wage rise health workers have been due since the start of April. But with the NHS pay review body delivering its report any day now, the Prime Minister will soon have nowhere to hide on NHS pay, says UNISON. Last month health worker...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 23, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release NHS pay rise Source Type: news

International solidarity is key to opposing authoritarian regimes
UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea was joined by an all-female panel of trade unionists at the special delegate conference’s international rally which, for the first time, took place online. Delegates heard harrowing accounts of the threats faced by those challenging the legitimacy of authoritarian regimes, and leaders using the COVID-19 crisis as cover to tighten their grip on power. Ms McAnea opened the rally by providing a sobering overview of the oppression and violence meted out to trade unionists and vulnerable communities around the world in the wake of the pandemic – from Israel’s bombardme...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 18, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference international Source Type: news

Conference ends with urgent call for fairer workplaces
When the pandemic is finally over, workplaces need to be made a lot more fairer for the people who have helped the country through the crisis, UNISON delegates heard today. Lilian Macer opened a debate on a composite motion made up of submissions from her own Scotland region and the Newcastle Hospitals branch, each addressing the need to create fairer workplaces. She said that it was UNISON members who had kept communities safe “in the eye of the COVID storm”. And yet the crisis of the last 15 months had shown more clearly than ever the unfairness that exists for so many of those workers. For instance, accordin...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 17, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference Josie Bird social care Source Type: news

The COVID experience: difficult to talk about, but vital that we do
Post-traumatic stress disorder, exhaustion, the demands of a backlog of non-COVID care during a staff exodus – these are just some of the issues currently facing the NHS workforce, UNISON’s special delegate conference heard yesterday. Linda Hobson from Newcastle Hospitals branch opened Wednesday afternoon’s business by moving a motion from the Northern region on The NHS after the pandemic. “It’s difficult to talk about what we’ve experienced, but it’s important that we do talk about it,” she told delegates. And as an NHS worker and branch secretary of a busy and acute hospita...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 17, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference Covid vaccine social care Source Type: news

Relying on employers to tackle racism will do little to protect Black workers
“Leaving employers to tackle racism is not working.” That was the uncompromising message from senior Black UNISON activists speaking at a conference fringe event this week, looking at race equality. NEC member Davena Rankin was joined by deputy head of health Helga Pile, Chair of the National Black Members Committee Kebba Manneh, and UNISON Eastern regional secretary Tim Roberts, for an online analysis of the strides UNISON has made tackling workplace racism and what more needs to be done. Speakers agreed that real change will only be achieved through Black staff organising themselves and demanding it. Helga Pi...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 17, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article 2021 virtual special national delegate conference black members Source Type: news

Climate has to be an issue for all our members
The environment was at the forefront of debate at this week’s special delegate conference, with members in agreement that any real recovery from the pandemic must involve the creation of a green and sustainable economy – one that includes public service workers at its heart. All eyes are now on the United Nations Conference of the Parties on Climate Change (COP26), in Glasgow in November 2021. The union will be mobilising members for a significant engagement at the talks, to ensure the needs of workers and public services are central to the results. Moving the motion Tackling climate change and COP26, Tony Slav...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 17, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference climate change green unison international Source Type: news

Health pay rise must be for everyone in the  NHS
Thousands of health service staff employed by private companies must not lose out on the wage rise that’s expected to be announced soon for their NHS colleagues, says UNISON today (Thursday). Porters, cleaners, catering assistants and other healthcare workers in NHS jobs outsourced to private contractors have performed tirelessly throughout the pandemic, says UNISON. But the union fears most will be excluded from the coming pay increase unless private firms, the government and NHS trusts act now. UNISON is calling on all private companies running health service contra...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 17, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Fatima Ayad Tags: Article Source Type: news

‘We must be the generation that rebuilds after the pandemic’
Delegates at UNISON’s special delegate conference today discussed the key issues that needed to be addressed as society emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic – notably pay, equality and climate change. The motion Securing an equal and sustainable post pandemic settlement notes that that the UK faces a comparable choice to that one faced after the second world war – to return to how things were before, or create a better future. “That choice is clear,” it states, “and the moment must be seized as an opportunity to tackle the deep fault lines so cruelly exposed by the pandemic….  ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 16, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference Source Type: news

‘Unions are very 2021’ – so let’s keep growing
“Conference is extremely proud of the growth in membership across the regions over the past year. This includes not only the high recruitment rate but importantly, the strong retention rate as well.” That was the starting point for a motion at special delegate conference on Growing UNISON, learning the good lessons. “Health and safety became crucial overnight … membership of trade unions became a new demand,” said Phoebe Watkins from Camden, who moved the motion for the Greater London region. She went on to offer examples of how her branch used social media and IT to keep in contact with memb...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 16, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference organising Source Type: news

Conference demands full inquiry into the handling of the pandemic
The demand for a full public inquiry into the Westminster government’s handling of the COVID pandemic was at the heart of a key debate The impact of COVID-19 on UNISON members, public services and working life at UNISON’s special delegate conference yesterday. Margaret McKee (pictured above), moving a motion for the national executive council, told delegates why it was so important: “That government’s failures over the provision of personal protective equipment (PPE) at the very beginning of the pandemic – and conference, that inquiry must also cover how those contracts were awarded – to...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 16, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference Covid-19 domestic violence Source Type: news

Compulsory jabs risk driving staff away and are the wrong approach
Responding to reports that the government is set to announce that Covid-19 vaccinations are to be made compulsory for care home staff in England, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said today (Wednesday): “The only way out of the pandemic is for everyone that can to have their jabs. Encouragement has the best results and research shows coercion makes the nervous less likely to be vaccinated. “The government’s sledgehammer approach now runs the risk that some care staff may simply walk away from an already understaffed, undervalued and underpaid sector. “If these heavy-handed plans s...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 16, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release care workers Covid vaccine Source Type: news

The pandemic has ‘exposed and exacerbated structural inequality’
“We are pioneers this week.” That’s how UNISON president Josie Bird opened the union’s special delegate conference this morning – the first time the national gathering of activists has gone virtual. While UNISON had to abandon its national delegate conference last year, as the country was still struggling to cope with COVID-19 and lockdown, to do so a second time was never an option, she said, as the gathering was “the most important cog in the machinery of the union’s democracy.” Ms Bird was speaking from a studio in Congress House in London, where she was joined live by her...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 15, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article News 2021 virtual special national delegate conference UNISON president Source Type: news

‘Attack is the best form of defence’ against cuts and pay freeze
Anger and disbelief hung in the air as delegate after delegate at the special local government conference condemned the government’s public sector pay freeze. Speakers reacted with dismay at minsters’ ‘divide and rule’ tactic that pitted public sector workers against private sector staff, and manufactured a divide between ‘deserving’ NHS frontline workers and the ‘non-deserving’ who kept schools open, classrooms clean, collected refuse and fought crime throughout the three lockdowns. The service group executive called on the union’s national executive committee (NEC) to...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News local government local government conference 2021 Source Type: news

WET conference stresses the importance of health and safety
Health and safety “might not grab the headlines … but that work is vital”. Opening the weekend’s virtual conference for UNISON’s water, environment and transport service group (WET), Ruth Davies (pictured above), the chair of the service group executive, paid tribute to the members who have helped keep the country going in the pandemic. The virus has had a “devastating impact”, she noted. It has been like “nothing we’ve experienced before, and safety has had to be paramount”. But Ms Davies said that it was a “demonstration of the strength of our union and o...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2021 Special WET Conference Source Type: news

Care employers still not giving sick pay to Covid-hit staff, says UNISON survey          
A third of care staff are getting less than £100 a week – and some no pay at all – for having to shield or self-isolate during the pandemic, according to a UNISON survey published today (Monday). The findings – from over 4,000 workers in the UK, including those in care homes and out in the community – also show employees face pressure from bosses to go into work, despite displaying virus symptoms or needing to self-isolate. Separate evidence seen by UNISON confirms large care companies and many smaller ones across the country are refusing to pay full normal wages for staff affected by Cov...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Sophie Goodchild Tags: News Press release adult social care Source Type: news

Serious about levelling up? Let ’s see the evidence
Speaking online, general secretary Christina McAnea thanked delegates for attending one of the first major UNISON online conferences since the pandemic struck. While acknowledging that the virtual event was far from ideal, she focused on the importance of local government members coming together – in person or digitally – to set the direction for UNISON and debate the key issues affecting the sector. Thanking members for the great work they’ve done in difficult circumstances, Ms McAnea said: “At UNISON we’ve always known that council, school, college staff and all our other members in the...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article Christina McAnea local government local government conference 2021 Source Type: news

Councils need a bold new vision to fund and deliver essential services
The perilous state of local government finances and the future of the sector provoked passionate discussion during the special local government conference. Angela Waller, speaking for the executive, referenced UNISON research that calculated that, in 2020, councils faced a combined funding shortfall of £10 billion. To put the figure into context, Ms Waller said the amount local government lost over 10 years of austerity was 15 billion. “So, 10 billion for just one year is huge.” The impact of a decade of austerity, combined with the effect COVID-19 has had on councils and schools’ costs, raised ques...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News local government local government conference 2021 Source Type: news

Local government conference remembers those lost to the pandemic
UNISON president Josie Bird opened the virtual special local government conference on Sunday with a call for delegates to observe a minute’s silence, to remember all those who have lost their lives during the pandemic. Summing up the seismic impact that COVID-19 has had on staff, Ms Bird said: “The last 15 months have been a time that none of us has experienced before – and no one would wish to again. “I’m sure that we will all have had our own experiences of death, grief, illness and certainly isolation. We can relate to and share the thoughts and feelings of the many thousands of people acro...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News local government local government conference 2021 Source Type: news

Blog: Why G7 leaders need to work much harder on vaccine access
G7 leaders are meeting this weekend in Cornwall and one of the main things they’ll be discussing is global access to COVID-19 vaccines. The world cannot be safe until everyone has access to a vaccine. So we are in a race against time to reach global coverage and prevent new variants emerging. Since January, UNISON has been calling for the right to manufacture vaccines to be made freely available, so that there can be major step change in the production of vaccines. The World Trade Organisation (WTO) agreement on intellectual property rights includes a clause to free up these rights in exceptional circumstances. If a ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 11, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Christina McAnea Tags: General secretary's blog Christina McAnea Covid vaccine international Source Type: news

There was no protective ring around social care
Responding to comments made today (Thursday) by the health secretary to the Health and Social Care and Science and Technology Committees, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Matt Hancock has rather a selective memory. There was no protective ring. In the early days of the pandemic social care was left completely high and dry. “Terrified staff spent weeks without access to proper protective kit. Supply shortages forced care workers to either buy or make their own safety gear from whatever they could lay their hands on. “To make matters worse, early government guid...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release care workers coronavirus Source Type: news

Vaccine sharing programme  must be top of G7 agenda
Leaders of the G7 nations must use this week’s summit to agree a temporary waiver of the intellectual property (IP) rights for the coronavirus vaccine ​to allow more of the world’s population to be vaccinated and quickly, says UNISON today (Thursday).   The G7 nations, whose members include the UK, Canada, Germany and the US, have so far failed to reach agreement on a proposal made last year by India and South Africa to the World Trade Organisation. This ​proposal sought to bypass the monopoly held ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release Covid vaccine Source Type: news

Tackling NHS backlogs must begin with a proper pay rise
Commenting on new NHS England figures published today (Thursday) showing extensive waiting times for procedures, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “Clearing these lengthy backlogs is no easy feat. Patients are facing years of discomfort waiting for the sort of complex diagnoses, treatment and surgery ​that can only be done by the NHS. “That’s why it’s so important to support and retain the existing workforce, many of whom are burnt out and ​completely demoralised. “A proper pay rise is a priority in stopping the exodus of staff, making them feel valued and recruiting more p...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release NHS pay rise pandemic Source Type: news

Bring back face coverings to limit school Covid disruption
Four education unions representing teachers and support staff are today (Tuesday) calling on the government to reinstate face coverings in schools to limit coronavirus spread. With infections on the rise once more, the unions have issued a joint statement demanding a range of safety measures to keep education on track and reduce the risk of further closures. The unions that have signed are UNISON, GMB, Unite and NEU. The joint statement says: “Education unions are deeply concerned that secondary school age students now have the highest rates of Covid-19 infection of all age groups, according to Public Health England ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 8, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus schools face coverings school staff Source Type: news

Wage and sick pay reform needed in health and social care
Responding to the publication today (Tuesday) of the Health and Social Care Committee’s report on workforce burnout and resilience, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said: “NHS and social care staff are at breaking point. The pandemic’s taken a serious toll on their mental health, and there’s no let-up in sight. “High vacancy rates mean many are struggling with excessive workloads. Yet the government’s failed to address this staffing crisis. “The Prime Minister must act now to award a pay rise that allows the NHS to attract new people and stops the exodus of existing staff....
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 7, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release care workers NHS staff pandemic Source Type: news

Post-pandemic contract would give low-paid care workers a better deal
Commenting on the Resolution Foundation’s Low Pay Britain report published today (Monday), and its call for the government to give lower-earning workers a new post-pandemic contract, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Care workers have been at the heart of the pandemic, giving their everything to look after the most vulnerable. “Wholesale reform of social care is long overdue, and even when the government eventually announces it has a plan, real change will take time. “But there’s a simple step that can happen now. One that would show every care worker that ministers appreciate w...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 6, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release care workers real living wage Source Type: news

Blog: During Pride, let ’s recommit to act for LGBT+ equality
June is Pride month. Though not many of us are in central London to see it, the UNISON Centre is rainbow-lit in celebration. It’s a time for joy. LGBT+ people and communities face layers of discrimination. I’ll come to that. But it’s right to start with the pride. There have always been LGBT+ people, right across the globe. They may not always be visible, but the way in which LGBT+ people enrich society is clear to anyone who looks. We can see it in our own union, with LGBT+ activists – and staff – everywhere. Local reps, equality leads, branch secretaries, regional convenor teams, service gro...
Source: UNISON Health care news - June 4, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Christina McAnea Tags: General secretary's blog News equality LGBT Pride Source Type: news

List of  failures shows how little government understands about care sector
Commenting today (Thursday) on the Prime Minister’s claim everything possible was done to limit Covid spread in care homes, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said: “It’s simply not true the government did all it could to protect the care sector. “Discharging ​hospital patients into care homes without testing was a colossal mistake ​that could and should have been avoided. It’s just one of ​many ways that the government has fail​ed care ​staff, residents and their families. “The absence of full sick pay meant financial pressur...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 27, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus social care Source Type: news

Publish data on school Covid variant cases now, say unions
Eight unions, collectively representing the majority of school and college staff, have today (Thursday) written to the education secretary to call for immediate publication of the data held by the government and Public Health England (PHE) on the total number of variant cases linked to schools and colleges. The letter says: “Education unions have repeatedly requested this data since early May. It should have been released in advance of the change in guidance on face coverings, which came into effect on 17 May.” The unions involved are ASCL, GMB, NASUWT, NAHT, NEU, NSEAD, UNISON and Unite. In the joint letter th...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 27, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus schools Source Type: news

UNISON joins campaign to optimise AHP support workers
UNISON has joined with other organisations to warn that allied health professional support workers must get equitable access to consistent and sustainable funding for education and professional development opportunities to support safe and effective patient care. Allied health professional (AHP) support workers continue to be a crucial part of the pandemic response, yet many report feeling invisible and underused. The coalition warns that healthcare services are failing to use the knowledge, skills and experience of AHPs in a planned and strategic way, undermining efforts to meet the demands of a growing population and ada...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 26, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News health Source Type: news

UNISON increases pressure for COVID public inquiry ‘ sooner rather than later ’
UNISON will continue to support the people of Palestine as the conflict in the Middle East remains a “huge issue for UNISON now and in the future”, general secretary Christina McAnea told the union’s national executive council (NEC) in an online meeting today. Highlighting the strong statements that have been made by the union and have been widely picked up since the recent conflict started, Ms McAnea reiterated that UNISON “stands squarely with trade unionists and workers in both Palestine and Israel”. Closer to home, the general secretary also stressed that the pandemic and helping members d...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 26, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News covid inquiry general secretary NEC Source Type: news

UNISON statement on Gaza ceasefire
UNISON welcomes the ceasefire between the Israeli government and Hamas, and the suspension of the latest deadly assault on Gaza, which has needlessly devastated so many lives. For 11 days, the people of Gaza have endured Israeli military airstrikes, killing 242 Palestinians including 66 children. A further 1,950 people have been injured and 106,000 forced to leave their homes in search of protection. A dozen people in Israel have died, including from rockets fired from Gaza, with 27 Palestinians in the West Bank. UNISON condemns the violence and regrets the loss of Palestinian and Israeli lives. For the fourth time since 2...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 25, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News international Palestine Source Type: news

Blog: Levelling up the forgotten frontline
Many, many working people have helped the country get us to this point on the pandemic journey. Our future is brighter and full of hope now – only because of the sacrifices of so many. Our local government workers deserve no less credit and applause than health workers. This army of care workers, school support staff, refuse collectors, social workers and many more went out to work, day in, day out, while many of us were able to do our jobs from home. While the media focussed on the crisis in our hospitals, our members put themselves in harm’s way, to help the most vulnerable in our communities and keep our mos...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 25, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Christina McAnea Tags: General secretary's blog News Christina McAnea local government Source Type: news

Blog: George Floyd ’s murder, one year on
UNISON is supporting the TUC and Stand up to Racism’s call for action to mark the anniversary of the murder of George Floyd, to challenge racism and continue the fight for racial justice in workplaces and in wider society. George’s murder galvanised people in the UK, the USA and across the world into taking action against racial injustice on a scale not seen before. The murder had a huge effect on people because it happened in real time – it lasted for over nine minutes and 39 seconds – it was recorded by a young teenage bystander who provided the world with this incontrovertible evidence to bear wi...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 25, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Gloria Mills Tags: Blogs black members equalities Source Type: news

UNISON endorses Labour ’s call for an international vaccine plan
UNISON has endorsed Labour’s call for the UK government to back the international vaccine waiver in a bid to tackle COVID-19 around the world. Pressure is growing on Boris Johnson’s government to follow the US government backing for a patent waiver for coronavirus vaccines at the World Trade Organisation. But writing in The Guardian, shadow secretary of state for international trade Emily Thornberry argues that a patent waiver should only be the start of coordinated international action to tackle the pandemic, and the UK government has shown a critical lack of international leadership a...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 21, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News Covid vaccine Covid-19 international Source Type: news

NHS pay campaign: #2daysfor2k kicks off around the UK
In the latest instalment of the #2daysfor2k campaign taking place now, health workers across England, Wales and Northern Ireland are taking part in  a whole host of imaginative ways to demand a real pay rise. UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “NHS staff have given their all during the pandemic.  But despite their incredible efforts, the Westminster government says a meagre 1% rise is all they’re worth. We have to apply maximum pressure to force them to admit they’ve got this badly wrong. “The record number of patients waiting for treatment shows the huge challenges ahead for the NHS....
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 18, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article 2days for 2k health pay NHS Source Type: news

Higher education staff reject 1.5% pay offer
UNISON’s higher education service group executive have met and rejected the final pay offer made by HE national employers UCEA. Earlier this year, UNISON joined other education unions to submit a claim for a £2,500 increase, and a minimum wage of £10 per hour, or £10.85 for people in London. The final pay offer made by UCEA is a 1.5% increase for the majority of HE staff. HE staff on lower pay points have been offered higher percentage increases on a sliding scale, between 1.54% and 3.6%. The pay offer would mean that the lowest pay point would be equivalent to the current foundation living wage rat...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 17, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article higher education higher education pay Source Type: news

“Disappointing” council pay offer ignores huge Covid effort of workforce, say unions
Unions representing 750,000 council and school support staff across England, Wales and Northern Ireland today (Friday) criticised the 1.5% pay offer made by the Local Government Association. GMB, Unite and UNISON submitted a joint pay claim to the local government employers in February for a 10% pay rise. This would be payable from 1 April 2021. The unions say the joint claim represents a decent wage rise that’s both necessary to put a stop to poverty pay in local government and schools, and recognises the crucial role played by staff during the pandemic. UNISON head of local government Jon Richards said: “This...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 14, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release NJC pay 2021 Source Type: news

UNISON ’s NEC election ballot helpline is now open
Eager to vote in this year’s NEC elections, but wondering why your ballot paper hasn’t arrived? Pandemic post still a bit wayward? If so, then help is at hand. UNISON’s ballot helpline has opened today (Thursday 13 May), to ensure that no member loses their chance to vote in the union’s most important election. Voting is already underway and ends on 27 May. So everyone should have received their ballot paper by now. If that’s not the case, individuals can simply contact the helpline and request a new one. The helpline, operated by UNISONdirect, is the latest tool that we hope will help members...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 13, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article News elections national executive council NEC Source Type: news

Covid inquiry next year  is way too late, says UNISON
Commenting on the announcement by the Prime Minister today (Wednesday) that an inquiry into the pandemic will not begin until spring 2022, UNISON general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Launching the public inquiry next spring is way too late. It must begin while experiences are still fresh in ​everyone’s minds. People have already waited long enough. “The government owes answers to the workers, the public and the families of those who have lost their lives. “A return to something resembling normality is what people want and deserve. Bu...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 12, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Fatima Ayad Tags: News Press release Christina McAnea covid inquiry Source Type: news

Compulsory vaccinations for care staff are the wrong approach
This study makes plain any talk of compulsory vaccination could damage take-up ​severely. “​Care workers need clear, accurate information from their employers about when and how they ​to get their jab​s. “If ​achieving maximum ​coverage is the goal, employers and policymakers w​ill get better results through encouragement, reassurance and removal of any practical barriers ​for staff. ​Forced ​injections ​simply aren’t the answer.” Notes to editors: – UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 mill...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 12, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release social care vaccination Source Type: news

Blog: The UK government must act on planned Palestinian evictions
We have all been shocked and appalled by the devastating scenes at the al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem during the holy month of Ramadan. On Monday, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society reported that over 300 Palestinians had been injured during the Israeli police raid on the mosque compound – almost 230 of whom were hospitalised. Last night, the Israeli military carried out bombing raids on Gaza, killing 24 people, including nine children, according to the ministry of health. Two Israelis also died when rockets were fired from Gaza, according to reports from Israeli paramedics. Tensions have escalated in recent week...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 11, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Christina McAnea Tags: General secretary's blog News Christina McAnea international Source Type: news

Removing the need for masks in schools “too much, too soon”, says UNISON
Commenting on the announcement today (Monday) that the government will no longer recommend the use of face coverings in secondary schools and colleges in England, UNISON head of education Jon Richards said: “This is a case of too much, too soon. Everyone wants to get back to normality, but any change has to happen safely. Otherwise, all the care taken over the past few months in schools could be undone. “Face masks will still be needed in other indoor spaces like shops, restaurants and cinemas. Schools and colleges shouldn’t be treated any differently. “New virus variants are out in the communi...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus schools Source Type: news

Blog: Your safety is paramount as we start to return to workplaces
If COVID-19 has done anything, it’s reminded us all of the vital importance of workplace health and safety. Something, of course, we’ve always known at UNISON. As lockdown restrictions continue to be eased across all four nations – thanks in no small measure to the success of our NHS vaccination program – many of us over the coming weeks or months will be returning to the workplace for the first time in quite some time. Of course many of you have continued to go into your workplaces to keep public services going during the pandemic, or have been out working in the community providing essential suppo...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Christina McAnea Tags: General secretary's blog Be on the safe side Christina McAnea health and safety reps Source Type: news

Settled status – under 100 days left to apply
Time is running out for EU migrant workers to secure their future in the UK, with less than two months left before time runs out. The settlement scheme ensures that EU, EEA and Swiss citizens and their family members will secure their immigration status to continue to live and work in the UK after Brexit. If you do not apply by the deadline, you might lose your legal rights to live, work and access healthcare and education in the UK. It is very important to make sure that you have applied by 30 June. If your legal right to be in the UK depends on an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen, you also need to apply to the settled status scheme....
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News BREXIT EU settlement scheme migrant workers Source Type: news

UNISON introduces new mental health bargaining guide
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected every workplace across the UK and is set to leave a lasting legacy for working arrangements over many years to come. UNISON’s bargaining guidance has been adapting to all these changes with a host of new and revised advice designed to help activists meet the challenge at the negotiating table. This includes a new guide, Bargaining on Mental Health Policies. The union has set out the guide to assist branches in ensuring that organisations treat mental health with the seriousness it deserves, with procedures that protect staff in general and maximise the assistance give...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News bargaining Covid-19 mental health Source Type: news

UNISON calls for support for workers ’ mental health
This week is Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK, and UNISON’s learning and organising unit has resources available to help members across the union, after the toughest of years. Head of health Sara Gorton said: “We know working throughout the pandemic has been difficult for many UNISON members. “As restrictions begin to ease, we hope this will bring a chance to focus on the rest that’s needed and for more time spent with loved ones outdoors.” And Ms Gorton continued: “Employers must provide supportive work environments, recognising the positive impact they can have on people’s ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 10, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article Source Type: news

Higher education employers make ‘disappointing’ final offer
The joint higher education trade unions have expressed “disappointment” today, after the employers made a final offer of just 1.5% for staff in the sector for the year 2021-2022, which begins for the workforce on 1 August. The unions met the employers, Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA), at the third and final pay negotiation meeting for the pay settlement yesterday. At the first meeting in March, the employers made an opening offer that equated to 1.1% of the pay bill, which didn’t meet any of the key elements of the joint unions’ pay claim. Having rejected the opening...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 7, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News higher education Source Type: news

British and Irish trade unions condemn Colombian state violence
UNISON has joined a number of British and Irish trade unions in condemning the latest human rights abuses, including the killing of protestors, by state forces in Colombia. General secretary Christina McAnea and TUC president Frances O’Grady are among those who have written to the foreign offices in London and Dublin with their “profound condemnation” of the violence in the South American country. Their open letter notes that since the latest round of trade union-led national strikes began on 28 April, human rights abuses have been committed on “a massive scale”. According to national human ri...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 6, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article News international Source Type: news

UNISON celebrates Domestic Abuse Bill passing into law
UNISON is celebrating after playing a major role in ensuring that new legal protections for those suffering domestic have now become law. The Domestic Abuse Bill was given royal assent and became law on on 29 April, after years of campaigning from survivors, charities and unions, including UNISON. The act will provide  increased protection to the millions who experience domestic abuse, while also strengthening measures to tackle the abusers. In the UK, almost one in three women will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime, while two women a week are murdered by a partner or ex-partner, usually after a sustained ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 4, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News domestic violence unison women Source Type: news

Update on UNISON ’ s legal assistance
UNISON is pleased to announce that access to the union’s legal assistance has reverted to the UNISONdirect service. At the start of the pandemic, in March 2020, the union adapted its processes and a new dedicated legal helpline was set up. This number is now no longer needed and access to UNISON’s legal help can be obtained through UNISONdirect on 0800 0 857 857.   Please note this does not relate to employment law matters. As always, issues related to members’ work and employment law assistance should continue to be directed in the first instance to branches and, as appropriate, the regions. H...
Source: UNISON Health care news - May 4, 2021 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News legal services Source Type: news