UNISON organiser helps families find half-term meals
A UNISON organiser has set up a website to help families locate free meals during half term. Help Out When School’s Out was set up by UNISON area organiser Jack Horwood and his friends in response to the government’s decision to not extend free school meals to cover school holidays. The website has a postcode search tool that lists the contact details of local businesses offering support to children and families this half term. Inspired by footballer Marcus Rashford’s #EndChildFoodPoverty campaign, over 1,800 businesses are now listed on the site, ranging from cafes, pubs and restaurants to community cent...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 29, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News Covid-19 free school meals Source Type: news

Society must do more to tackle structural racism, says UNISON
Commenting on the review by Baroness Lawrence into the impact of Covid-19 on Black communities, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said today (Tuesday): “This vital report goes to the heart of so many of the problems the pandemic is putting into stark relief. “Doreen Lawrence is right to say urgent action is needed to protect Black communities from the second wave. “With rising infections, all employers must carry out individual risk assessments for staff and put the findings into immediate effect. “Much more must be done to tackle the structural racism in society that’s led to the dispropo...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 27, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release black members Covid-19 Source Type: news

UNISON asks exit payments questions of the Treasury
UNISON has sent a letter to the Treasury’s solicitor that could pave the way for further action over the exit cap regulations. Last week’s national executive council’s policy development and campaigns committee heard that UNISON has been having discussions with legal advisors and sister unions about the possibility of challenging the regulations. Late on Friday evening, the letter was sent requesting responses to a number of points. Unite and the GMB have submitted similar letters. The BMA has also submitted a separate letter. The letter raises a number of questions about the proposals, including whe...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 26, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News exit payments public sector exit cap Source Type: news

Teaching assistants covering twice as many lessons in the pandemic
UNISON has discovered that twice as many teaching assistants (TAs) are standing in for teachers and giving lessons than before the COVID-19 pandemic. A survey from the union has seen 4,460 teaching assistants respond, with 25% saying they had been asked to lead classes and 27% saying they’d been asked to provide cover supervision. A survey in 2018 revealed that 12% of teaching assistants had been asked to undertake tasks from a higher grade, including standing in for teachers. UNISON head of education Jon Richards said that teaching assistants were being asked to cover for teachers who were falling ill or having to s...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 23, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News Covid-19 Jon Richards schools teaching assistants Source Type: news

The power of union learning
“A few years ago … I wouldn’t have said boo to a goose, but my confidence and my own self-worth have grown.” Those are the words of Sharon Thompson, hospital catering assistant and UNISON member, and one of the many, many workers who has benefited from union learning. Sharon had, at one time, wanted to study child psychology, but university wasn’t possible. Some years down the line, when she was having difficulties at work, UNISON learning rep Hazel Kjebekk suggested learning to her. Together, they came up with a plan for her to study counselling, starting with a confidence workshop available...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 23, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News laos save union learning Source Type: news

Employers must do all they can to reduce Covid impact on Black staff, says UNISON
Responding to new government measures to address race disparities in the impact of Covid-19 announced today (Thursday), UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “The heightened risks to Black* staff are now well-known, even if some causes remain unexplained. “NHS trusts have been carrying out the individual risk assessments, taking account of key factors including underlying health conditions, job role, ethnicity and home circumstances. “As infections continue to rise, all employers must do the same. They should ensure the findings are put into effect by doing everything possible to protect more vulnerable...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release black members coronavirus Source Type: news

A national care service is needed urgently  to reform social care, says UNISON       
Commenting on the Health and Social Care Committee report published today (Thursday) into funding and workforce issues UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Social care has been at the bottom of the pile for too long. Employees are underpaid and undervalued despite their skilled work looking after disabled people and the elderly. “The pandemic has highlighted the urgent need for radical change. This has been obvious to many for a while, but the government has failed to act. It must do so before there are more deaths in care homes and among staff. “Doing nothin...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 21, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Sophie Goodchild Tags: News Press release social care Source Type: news

Disabled people an ‘ afterthought ’ for government during COVID
Almost 60% of people whose deaths involved COVID-19 between March and July this year were disabled, UNISON’s Disability Live! online conference heard this week. In light of those terrible figures, from the Office of National Statistics, speakers agreed that disabled people were an “afterthought” in the government’s approach to the pandemic. Disability Live! was launched on Monday with a session in which disabled workers from all over the UK joined Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people, Vicky Foxcroft, the TUC’s Quinn Roche and UNISON’s Maureen LeMarinel for a discussion of t...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 21, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article News Covid-19 disabled members Source Type: news

Extra support for NHS staff welcome but high vacancy levels don ’t help, says UNISON
Commenting on the NHS England £15m package of extra mental health support for staff announced today (Tuesday), UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “Extra support for hard-pressed NHS staff will be gratefully received everywhere. Winters are difficult at the best of times, but the combination of colder months and a pandemic takes the pressure to a whole new level. “Memories of the first Covid wave are still fresh, so there’s much anxiety about what’s coming next. Once again, the country is relying upon the entire NHS team to save lives and keep people safe, but they’re not s...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 20, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus health workers mental health Source Type: news

Let ’ s make future Black history a positive one
No doubt, 2020 has been a torrid year for so many reasons. For Black people, the increased incidence of COVID and the continuing fight against racism – highlighted most starkly by the death of George Floyd in the US – has made it a year not to be forgotten. And now we are in the middle of Black History Month, and it’s clear to Kebba Manneh that Black history needs to be seen and heard, discussed and taught, all year round – not just for a single month each year. Back in March, Kebba was elected as the new chair of UNISON’s national Black members’ committee – just as the country fou...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 19, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article Black history month unison black members UNISON Cymru Wales Black members Source Type: news

No one should be profiting from test and trace failure, says UNISON
Commenting on profits looking likely to exceed expectations at outsourcing giant Serco, UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said today (Friday): “It was a mistake from the start for the government to have involved private companies, instead of the NHS and local authorities. “Shareholders shouldn’t be rubbing their hands with glee when the test and trace system is a catastrophe. ​“Infections are rising, hospital admissions are soaring, and test and trace has just had its worst week ever. No one should be profiting from failure. “The government must immediately hand t...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 16, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus testing Source Type: news

Covid vaccine roll-out must not involve private firms
The government must ensure the roll-out of any Covid-19 vaccine is managed entirely by the NHS and public bodies, and not allow the involvement of private firms and the use of unqualified staff, says UNISON today (Friday). In its response to a consultation by the Department of Health and Social Care on changes to medicine regulations, the union has raised concerns about allowing non-healthcare professionals to administer any vaccine. Millions of people will need to be protected from coronavirus once a vaccine is approved. It’s vital that any vaccination programme is delivered and su...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 15, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release Covid-19 vaccine Source Type: news

Pay and jobs boost needed immediately  for social care and NHS staff, says UNISON   
Commenting on the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC’s) annual assessment of the state of health and social care in England, UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Social care is undervalued and underfunded – staff need a new deal as the CQC highlights. A national care service that mirrors the NHS would banish bargain-basement wages and profit-making. “A pay and jobs boost is needed both in social care and the NHS. This would help raise morale, which is plummeting fast among workers as Covid cases soar. “The Prime Minister must act now to ensure h...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 15, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Sophie Goodchild Tags: Article care quality commission Source Type: news

Thousands will suffer in retirement due to government ’ s public sector exit-payment cap
A government cap on public sector exit payments due to take effect next month will blight the retirement of long-serving council staff and needs to be urgently reformed, says UNISON today (Thursday). Ministers claimed the legislation, limiting payments to £95,000, was designed to reduce the level of council payouts to senior managers. But instead thousands of​ staff with decades of service could be caught up in problems caused by the new law, says UNISON. Despite warning of the damaging impact of the cap, the government has ploughed ahead and now ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 15, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release Jon Richards Pension public sector exit cap Source Type: news

UNISON says probation reunification needs proper funding
UNISON members in probation support the government’s plans to reunify the service in England and Wales next summer, but it needs to ensure that proper funding is provided to make that process work. This was the central theme of the union’s contribution to the Westminster Parliament’s inquiry into the future of the probation service when it appeared before the justice select committee earlier this week. UNISON was giving evidence alongside fellow union Napo, and also stressed that adequate funding would be essential to: provide a pay and conditions package that would retain and attract skilled staff; refu...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 14, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News police and justice probation Source Type: news

UNISON will continue to oppose ‘ outrageous ’ exit payment plans
As previously reported – and despite continued opposition from UNISON and others – the government is about to bring in a cap of £95,000 on public sector exit payments. The last vote in Parliament has taken place and the final regulations are awaited. Once this happens, there will be a 21-day window for people to finalise any pending exits – for instance, redundancies – in order to avoid being hit by the cap. UNISON head of local government Jon Richards said: “In local government, the £95k cap includes pensions strain payments – money paid by the employer to the pension fund i...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 13, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News exit payments local government pensions Source Type: news

University support staff left carrying the can for chaotic start of term
University support staff are calling for managers and ministers to step in to end the Covid campus chaos that’s left them dealing with weeks of sometimes violent disruption, says UNISON today (Tuesday). Workers are angry at being left to manage the fallout, threats and abuse from frustrated students​ in isolation, with no extra support or recognition, the union says. Security officers at one university report regularly risking their own safety to break up rowdy groups of students angry at lockdown restrictions, says UNISON. At the same university, staff ha...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 13, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release Covid-19 higher education support staff Source Type: news

​Some employers only paying lip service to Black staff ’ s fears
Employers in the public sector must ensure all staff have robust, up to date risk assessments to protect the health and lives of Black workers as coronavirus infections rise, says UNISON today (Friday). It follows newly published UNISON research showing more than half of Black* staff (60%) working in the NHS, care homes and schools weren’t given Covid-19 risk assessments, even after the height of the pandemic. The poll of more than 10,000 employees also found over a third (35%) of those who had gone through the process – to identify the hazards st...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 9, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release Black history month black members Covid-19 Gloria Mills Source Type: news

‘ Be proud of our union ’
“I could not be prouder of this union and the way that you, our activists – and UNISON staff – have stepped up,” general secretary Dave Prentis told the union’s national executive council (NEC). In a time of crisis, insecurity and anxiety, the courage and dedication of UNISON members was what kept the country going, he said. “Our members have been through so much during the pandemic, and the union has to be there for them.” He told how, “back in March, we had 24 hours to close our buildings and relocate every function of the union so we could still be there for our members. S...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 8, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News dave prentis NEC Source Type: news

Unions say HE employers ’ pay freeze proposal is unacceptable
UNISON and the other higher education unions are calling on universities to think again, after the employers proposed a pay freeze for staff. The New Joint Negotiating Committee for Higher Education Staff (New JNCHES) has made clear that this is not acceptable and said that it has not abandoned the call for a pay deal for this year. There will be an additional meeting on 5 November at which sector finances will be reviewed. By this date, there should be greater clarity about the number of students who have signed up, although some universities are concerned about retention rates and January intake rates etc. In relation to...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 7, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News higher education higher education pay Source Type: news

Increasing participation in UNISON ’s general secretary election 2020
This autumn, members will pick a new leader for UNISON in our general secretary election. The general secretary is the most senior role in the union and speaks on behalf of members to other unions, the media, employers and governments. It’s important that as many members as possible take part and vote for the person who will best represent them. It’s no secret that fewer people are voting in elections – and that applies to UNISON too. And these are difficult times for our members, with so many of them working so hard to fight the pandemic and keep our services running – in our hospitals, emergency s...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 6, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article general secretary election Source Type: news

Green energy plans must be rolled out to more ​parts of the economy
Responding to the Prime Minister’s commitment to offshore wind energy during his Conservative conference speech ​today (Tuesday), UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said: “Unfortunately, the government’s track record isn’t great and ​ministers are falling behind ​their own legally binding net-zero targets. “Promises to decarbonise electricity though offshore wind are welcome, but ​it’s only part of the challenge. Doing the same for the heat and transport industries is vital, as is sorting out storage for the days ​when there’s no&...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 6, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release Christina McAnea government green energy Source Type: news

Guidance for branches on purchasing face coverings
UNISON has had enquiries from branches for guidance about purchasing face coverings to give out to members, or potential members, as a promotional item. It is important to remember that face coverings are not personal protective equipment (PPE). They are not designed to protect the wearer from infectious agents, but to protect others. Reusable cloth face coverings must be washed before and after each use. It is suggested that branches use our licensed supplier of promotional items, TC Branding Group. This ensures that products and services meet UNISON’s strict supplier and code of conduct criteria. TC Branding Group ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 5, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News Covid-19 Source Type: news

Blog: This Black History Month, we won ’ t go back to the old normal
October is Black History Month – a time to celebrate how Black people and communities have shaped our history. This year’s Black History Month is bittersweet. There is a new visibility to Black lives, but for the worst of reasons. So many Black lives have been lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. And while the reasons for this are complex, the main one is the ‘everyday’ racism deeply embedded across society. Black workers have faced the highest levels of risk because they are over-represented in frontline, low-paid jobs. Jobs that have been traditionally undervalued or even invisible. Our Black member...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 2, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: General secretary's blog News Black history month black members Covid-19 dave prentis Source Type: news

Addiction support workers enter last day of latest strike
Drug and alcohol support workers ​in the North West are on the last day of a 10-day strike today (Friday), as they continue their fight to force their employer, national charity We Are With You​​ (formerly Addaction), to give them a promised pay rise. ​The industrial action involves 30 rehabilitation staff from Wigan and Leigh in Greater Manchester. Yesterday, an ad van visited the Foundry Chambers and Gray’s Inn in London in order to get the message across to Lord Carlile, the Chair of We Are With You’s board of trustees. It then went on to We Are With You’s headquarters ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 2, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News Addaction Industrial action North West We Are With You Source Type: news

Health workers will play a part in hitting climate targets for NHS, says UNISON
Commenting on the publication today (Thursday) of the report Delivering A Net Zero Health Service, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “Although beating the virus is top of everyone’s list, the climate emergency hasn’t gone away. Today’s report will help the NHS move closer to hitting its net zero targets. “All health workers have a part to play in driving down carbon emissions, from estates and facilities staff to cleaners, caterers, administrative workers and clinicians. “The report also identifies the pressing need to tackle health inequalities, especially important for Black staf...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 1, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release climate change NHS Source Type: news

UNISON submits further education pay claim
UNISON has today submitted a pay claim for further education colleges in England, which seeks a “full restoration” of the cuts to pay in the sector over the past decade. The claim calls for: a significant move towards the full restoration of college pay levels to where they would be had college pay kept pace with inflation since 2009; the living wage, as calculated by the Living Wage Foundation, to be the minimum wage in the sector, with all further education colleges in England becoming accredited living wage employers with the foundation; all contracted-out services to be brought back in-house with improveme...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 1, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News FE pay further education Source Type: news

Only weekly testing of NHS staff will stop the virus in its tracks
Commenting on the call today (Thursday) from the Health and Social Care Committee for the weekly testing of NHS staff, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “Health workers must be tested once a week if the virus is to be stopped in its tracks. “The government’s failure to ensure regular testing, and speedy results, risks a repeat of the spring when Covid was allowed to spread freely in hospitals and care homes. “Health unions came up with a blueprint earlier in the year for how the NHS could safely open up services closed due to Covid. Regular testing topped the list. “Y...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 1, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release coronavirus testing health Sara Gorton Source Type: news

Government breaks pledge to stop low-paid health and care staff paying twice to use the NHS
The government has rowed back on a pledge to scrap the immigration health surcharge, which forces overseas health and care workers to pay to use the NHS, even though they already pay for it through tax and national insurance, says UNISON today (Thursday). Instead of scrapping the fee, low-paid health and care staff have been told they’ll have to pay it and claim the money back. A family of four on a three-year visa would have to find £7,488. The stress and anxiety of trying to scrape the money together while on low wages and working on the Covid frontline is pushing workers to the ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - October 1, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: Article News Press release Christina McAnea immigration social care Source Type: news

‘All they’ve done is ignite a toxic debate’
UNISON has accused the government of letting down trans people and offering false hope after a consultation on the Gender Recognition Act resulted in minimal changes and none of the improvements that the union or trans people have demanded. It’s two years since the government consultation on reforming the Gender Recognition Act – the law that sets the process for trans people to bring the gender on their birth certificates in line with their gender identity – was announced. The consultation was to update the process, which many believe is over-medicalised, legalistic, intrusive and indeed, humiliating for...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 30, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article equality LGBT members LGBT officers Source Type: news

Migration Advisory Committee report exposes government ’ s muddled immigration plan
Responding to the Migration Advisory Committee’s review of the shortage occupation list released today (Tuesday), UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said: “The report exposes the depth of the crisis facing the care sector and the lack of a coherent government plan to deal with low pay and chronic staff shortages. “The decision to make it more difficult for overseas care workers to fill the glut of vacancies is creating an unnecessary recruitment timebomb. “Including senior care staff on the shortage occupation list is welcome, but will make little ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 30, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release Christina McAnea migration social care Source Type: news

Taking UNISON ’s demands to the Treasury
Dave Prentis stopped by Rishi Sunak’s office today to present UNISON’s demands for investment in public services. The government announced last week that the autumn budget is cancelled, but the union is making it clear that the money needs to be in place to fund pay rises for our members who have kept the country going through the pandemic, and to protect the jobs and services that our communities rely upon. The general secretary said: “This is so important I wanted to deliver it to the Treasury in person. “I have asked Rishi Sunak for a meeting so that I can explain why it’s so important that...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 29, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article News #OneTeam2K Covid-19 dave prentis spending review Source Type: news

Stakes too high and pressures too great  to delay NHS pay rise
This report highlights the immense pressures the NHS is under. But it stops short of calling for an early and significant pay rise for all NHS staff. This would quite simply make the world of difference. “Years of falling employee numbers, increasing workloads and under-investment have left health workers on the brink – and that was before the pandemic struck. “A wage rise this year, of at least £2,000 to all staff, will help keep skilled workers in their jobs and attract many much-needed new recruits. “There’s no time for dither or delay. The stakes ar...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 28, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release fair pay NHS Sara Gorton Source Type: news

Health and care staff need reassurance about next stage of the pandemic, says UNISON
Monday 28 September 2020 For immediate release Health and care staff need reassurance about next stage of the pandemic, says UNISON Commenting on the health secretary’s announcement of increased production and supply of personal protective equipment for health and care workers, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said today (Monday): “It’s been a terrible time and with infections on the rise, the pandemic is far from over. “Health staff and care workers need reassurances there’ll be no repeats of the nightmares with safety kit shortages they faced in the spring. “It’s good most prote...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 28, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus PPE Source Type: news

Branch resources review restarts, with pledge to stay on schedule
The UNISON branch resources review has restarted after a five-month pause for COVID-19. “It’s good to be back” said UNISON President Josie Bird (pictured), who chairs the review group. Set up by the 2019 national delegate conference, the 24 lay members who make up the working party have committed to sticking with the timetable and getting a motion and report to conference in 2021. Ms Bird added: “It will be tough to regain lost time, but we are committed”. So far, 357 branches have taken part in the review, with plans for 17 to be approached for in-depth interviews. Branches have told the revi...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 25, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News branch resources review branches Josie Bird Source Type: news

Boost wages and scrap tuition  fees to turbo-charge nurse recruitment
Responding to NHS workforce statistics released today (Thursday) showing a 14,199 increase in nurse numbers and a 23% increase in nursing student acceptances, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “It’s good more nurses are now on wards and out in communities, but it’s a drop in the ocean compared to the 40,000 unfilled roles. “Ministers could easily turbo-charge recruitment by scrapping student tuition fees and giving staff the early and significant pay rise they deserve. “A wage boost would work wonders for frustrated health workers thinking of ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 24, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release NHS nurse Sara Gorton Source Type: news

​Support jobs and strengthen economy to maintain public services, says UNISON
Responding to the chancellor of the exchequer’s new plans to support jobs through further months of pandemic restrictions, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said today (Thursday): “These measures show the chancellor has been listening to unions and businesses. Supporting the wages of workers is an important first step in the battle to protect jobs across the UK. “A strong economy is vital to maintaining precious public services. The pandemic’s shown that it’s vital public services that hold our society together. They must be protected. “Fixing the flawed testing system and providing ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 24, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus public services Source Type: news

Government must safeguard thousands of university jobs, say education unions   
The job retention scheme should be extended – or another wage support scheme put in its place – to support thousands of university staff, such as catering and security workers who face redundancy, education unions say today (Thursday). In a joint letter to higher education minister Michelle Donelan, UNISON, GMB, Unite, the University and College Union (UCU), and the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) also warn problems with the test and trace system pose real risks to the health of staff, students and local communities. Ahead of the Chancellor’s expected announcement on further measures to ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 24, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release furlough ruth levin university Source Type: news

Survey reveals staff fears ahead of universities reopening
University staff including cleaners, security guards and administrative workers are facing a perfect storm of pressures that are leaving them out of pocket, and feeling increasingly anxious, a UNISON survey published today (Wednesday) has found. More than 4,000 employees completed the union’s annual higher education survey, which exposed concerns about pay, working hours and the threat from Covid-19. Three in five staff (60%) expressed anxiety about the return to campuses at the end of the month. Fears about social distancing (83%), a lack of personal protective equipment (45%) and the threat...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 23, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Garfield Myrie Tags: News Press release Covid-19 Jon Richards university Source Type: news

Early pay rise and end to tuition fees will help nursing workforce numbers, says UNISON
Commenting on the Public Accounts Committee’s report into the nursing workforce published today (Wednesday), UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “Many nurses are exhausted after the first peak of the pandemic and now they’re facing the next wave alongside a difficult winter. “The vital first step to stop nursing shortages worsening is an early, significant pay rise for everyone in the NHS. Staff need to know they’re valued and warm words from ministers aren’t enough. “Removing the NHS bursary from nursing students in England has been a disaster. They played a key role during th...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release nhs pay one team 2K Source Type: news

Government must do more to keep schools open and safe, education unions say
Giving all staff priority testing, reducing the size of pupil ‘bubbles’ and making face coverings compulsory on school buses would help ensure schools can continue to stay open in the coming weeks, education unions say today (Tuesday). In a joint letter to education secretary Gavin Williamson, several proposals are outlined by UNISON, GMB and Unite to reduce the risk of infection for children and staff​, and reduce the likelihood of ​entire school​s clos​ing. The ​letter stress​es that all school employees should have priority access to testing – not just teachers &nda...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus schools Source Type: news

Prentis urges Labour to commit to a ‘new deal’ for public services
This year’s Labour conference – online, as befits the times – marked two very special speeches: the last by Dave Prentis as UNISON general secretary, and the first by Keir Starmer as Labour leader. Both men paid powerful tribute to the public sector workers who have kept the UK on its feet during the COVID-19 pandemic. And Mr Starmer said it was time for Labour “to get serious about winning” and repair the damage done to public services by a decade of Tory government. The first of this year’s very different, COVID-affected party conferences started on Saturday, under the branding of Labo...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Demetrios Matheou Tags: Article affiliated political fund Covid-19 dave prentis Keir Starmer Labour Party no going back to normal social care UNISON Labour Link Source Type: news

UNISON recruits record numbers of health and safety reps
UNISON’s summer campaign to recruit new health and safety reps has already paid dividends, with record numbers of members showing an interest. Acting national secretary Donna Rowe-Merriman said: “In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, health and safety reps are vital to ensuring workplaces are safe. “#BeOnTheSafeSide has got off to a fantastic start. The level of interest shows just how important health and safety is to UNISON members, who want to be safe delivering vital services to the public. “It’s great that so many women and Black members have come forward to get involved.&rdq...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article #BeOnTheSafeSide Covid-19 health and safety Source Type: news

SOAS members secure victory against compulsory redundancies
UNISON members working at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) are celebrating this week after victory in their fight to halt compulsory redundancies. The redundancies at the school, which is part of the University of London, were set to happen at the end of this month as part of a restructure. In response to planned strike action for today and tomorrow, following online branch meetings (pictured), SOAS management has agreed to return to the negotiating table. Management has made the commitment to UNISON that there will be no compulsory redundancies for professional services staff, including cleaning, cat...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News higher education Source Type: news

Now more than ever we need a future-focused Labour government
Commenting on Keir Starmer’s keynote leader’s speech at the Labour Conference today (Tuesday), UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “Today Keir Starmer showed Labour’s new leadership is focused on the future, on the challenges our country faces at this unprecedented time and, crucially, on winning the next election. “UNISON members have faced a decade of austerity and pay cuts – they need a Labour Party that can, and will, win the next election. In Keir Starmer, Labour has a leader who can do just that. “Keir understands our members – including some of the lowest paid ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release Keir Starmer Labour Party Source Type: news

Blog: A union with plenty to shout about
After over 20 years of leading this union as general secretary, you’d have thought that I’d have seen it all. I couldn’t be surprised any more by our incredible members and the amazing work they do running our public services. You’d be forgiven for thinking my immense pride at what we achieve together could increase no more. But you’d be wrong. Obviously COVID-19 and our members’ collective and individual responses have left me feeling even more proud of our union and its members and their hard work than ever before. And luckily, this time of year gives us plenty of time to shout about t...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 22, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Dave Prentis Tags: General secretary's blog News adult social care Covid-19 Source Type: news

Care workers deserve pay to reflect their value, says UNISON
Commenting on Labour’s call for care workers to be paid at least the real living wage and for the prime minister to make good on his promise to fix social care, UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said today (Saturday): “Care workers perform skilled word day-in, day-out, looking after the most vulnerable people in society. “Their value has to be reflected in their pay. They must be given at least the real living wage, with full pay if they’re off sick. “The prime minister promised more than a year ago he had prepared a clear plan to fix social care. We’re still waiting. &...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 19, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release care workers real living wage Source Type: news

NHS staff say ‘ #OneTeam2K ’ as they call for a pay rise
Health workers deserve more than applause for their efforts – not least during the coronavirus pandemic. That’s why, yesterday and today, staff in UNISON branches based in NHS hospitals, ambulance stations and clinics are holding socially distanced events and using social media to call for a proper pay rise. UNISON’s pay claim, which was delivered to Downing Street last month, would see every NHS employee receive an increase of at least £2,000 by the end of the year. This early wage increase – equivalent to around £1 an hour extra for all staff – could give ailing local economies a...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 18, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Janey Starling Tags: Article News #OneTeam2K Covid-19 health care nhs pay Source Type: news

NEC nominates Christina McAnea in general secretary election
UNISON’s NEC today voted to nominate Christina McAnea as their chosen candidate in the forthcoming general secretary election. The union’s current general secretary, Dave Prentis, retires from the post on 31 December 2020. Christina has worked for UNISON for over 25 years and is currently the union’s assistant general secretary for bargaining, negotiations and equality. Voting in the election is open to all eligible UNISON members and will take place from 28 October until 27 November. More information on the general secretary 2020 election is available online. The article NEC nominates Christina McAnea i...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 16, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article general secretary election NEC Source Type: news

Testing chaos to blame for rise in NHS 111 and 999 calls, says UNISON
The government’s failure to resolve Covid-19 testing shortages is placing additional strain on NHS urgent care and emergency services, says UNISON today (Wednesday). Staff handling enquiries to the NHS 111 treatment advice line are reporting to the union that call volumes have increased significantly – in some cases more than trebling. These include non-urgent enquiries from people with Covid-19 symptoms about booking a test because they can’t get through to 119, the official NHS testing service number. Parents worried their children will be unable to return to school if they’re sick with the virus ...
Source: UNISON Health care news - September 16, 2020 Category: UK Health Authors: Anthony Barnes Tags: News Press release coronavirus testing emergency services Source Type: news