Branch noticeboard competition winners announced!
Congratulations to London Ambulance Service branch’s Battersea station who are the overall winners of our Grovember branch noticeboards competition. As part of last autumn’s month-long recruitment and retention push, we asked you to update your branch noticeboards and tweet us your pictures under the hashtag #ratemyboard to enter our competition. The 50 entries were whittled down to a shortlist of 11 and UNISON president Gordon McKay has now judged and chosen four prize winners. All the shortlisted branches are highly commended for their entries. The full results are: First prize of £500 for the branch go...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - January 16, 2019 Category: Food Science Authors: Lucy Shaddock Tags: News activists grovember recruiting recruiting and organising Source Type: news

Wythenshawe Sodexo staff win NHS pay rates
Facilities workers at Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester have got their new year off to a pleasant start with news of a pay rise, backdated to last April. The UNISON members provide key services such as cleaning, catering and portering, which are outsourced to private company Sodexo. The company has been paying these workers the NHS rate for their job since a successful UNISON campaign in 2007 – but had not implemented the NHS Pay Framework Agreement agreed nationally last summer. The pay deal ended years of pay freezes and pay caps and was very significant for low-wage workers in the NHS. It is worth between 6.5% an...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - January 16, 2019 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: News agenda for change health health care health pay hospitals outsourcing pay up now private contractors Source Type: news

It ’s time to bring probation back as a public service, government told
UNISON and other key stakeholders on probation are calling on the government to make probation in England and Wales a publicly owned public service when the current contracts of the 21 private ‘community rehabilitation companies’ end next year. The Probation Alliance made the call in a letter to to justice secretary David Gauke, while also setting out their worries over the “unrealistic” timetable for replacing the current 21 contracts with a smaller number of larger ones, still in the private sector. The probation service in England and Wales was split in two in 2014 as part of a programme called &...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - January 14, 2019 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article community rehabilitation companies let's fix probation national probation service police and justice Source Type: news

Listen to what police staff have to say, Home Office told
The Home Office’s “frontline review” of policing needs to be aware of how police staff are suffering from austerity and government cuts, says UNISON following a survey of 4,500 members. The union conducted the confidential online survey to give its members the opportunity to “tell it like it is”. It came after Home Secretary Sajid Javid launched his review in summer 2018 to “better understand” the workplace experience and needs of frontline police staff and officers. UNISON will publish the full results of the survey covering all police staff later this year. But highlights from th...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - January 8, 2019 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article police and justice Police and justice staff police cuts police staff Source Type: news

Urging councillors to help end violence at work
The UK’s largest union is asking that councils refuse to grant service and partnership contracts to organisations that won’t sign up to the 10 point plan to protect members at work. The campaign, which already has 35 charities and housing associations signed up, is gaining momentum and UNISON hopes that a new focus on council commissioning will encourage more community employers to take violence against their staff more seriously. The Charter is a list of 10 basic actions that third sector employers can take immediately to improve safety at work, including appropriate training, support for the victims of violen...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 19, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article community and voluntary sector end violence at work charter local government Source Type: news

Energy merger collapse means uncertain future for staff, says UNISON
Commenting on the announcement that the proposed merger between energy firm nPower and SSE is no longer happening, UNISON national energy officer Matt Lay said: “Bringing together the parts of both companies that look after residential customers was meant to secure jobs and ensure both firms had a future. “Now the deal is off, employees will feel understandably anxious about what’s to become of them. Both companies must now act quickly to end the uncertainty, and reassure staff.” Notes to editors: – UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members provi...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 17, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Anna Mauremootoo Tags: Press release Energy merger Source Type: news

Austerity is still very real for local services, says UNISON
  Commenting on the publication of the government’s local government finance settlement for 2019/20, UNISON head of local government Jon Richards said: “This is another £1bn dose of austerity for councils that will lead to yet more cuts to local services. “In five years over £6bn has been slashed from central government funding for councils. This has forced many authorities to dig deep into their reserves to protect services and given them no option but to raise council tax for local residents. “Now most councils’ cupboards are bare, and many services they aren’t legally...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 13, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release austerity communities councils local government finances local services Source Type: news

The government is making it harder to fight crime, says UNISON
  Commenting on the announcement by police minister Nick Hurd of a new funding settlement for police forces dependent on a council tax precept, UNISON national officer for police Ben Priestley said: “This money has not yet materialised, and there’s no guarantee the right amount will be raised. “Instead of raising hopes for new money the government should invest in policing and start restoring the huge cuts imposed on the service since 2010. By slashing police funding, all the government has managed to do is make it harder to fight crime effectively. “The public needs a lot more to feel reassure...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 13, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release ben priestley council tax council tax precept local government cuts police funding policing Source Type: news

That was the year that was
January saw the union launch a campaign to encourage local government pension funds to divest from carbon – in other words, to pull their hard-earned money out of environment-unfriendly businesses. Some £16bn of local government pension funds is invested in fossil fuels and, with five million members in those schemes, the campaign can make an impact. Later that month, the higher education service group conference met in Chester. “We have to stand up for our members’ rights,” delegates agreed – particularly in the face of Brexit. Just over 10% of all university workers come from elsewher...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 11, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article campaigning care workers equal pay equality health care Industrial action local government organising recruiting recruiting and organising success Source Type: news

Volunteers taking on police roles as cuts continue to bite
Cash-strapped police forces are filling some key job vacancies with unpaid volunteers amid ongoing cutbacks, says a report published today (Friday) by UNISON. The number of police support volunteers (PSVs) being used across England and Wales has soared to more than 6,000 – the equivalent of a 15% rise – in just four years from 2014 to 2017, according to the report Crossing the Line. Yet the number of paid police staff including Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) has dropped by 4,177 – or 5% – from 80,749 to 76,572 over a similar period, according to government figures*. The increasing relian...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 7, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Anna Mauremootoo Tags: Press release dave prentis police volunteers Source Type: news

Record recruitment figures announced at NEC meeting
UNISON’s final NEC meeting of 2018 opened with “good news to end the year on and a great way to start 2019”. A report on the month-long campaign for growth that the union ran in November – or Grovember as it was dubbed within the union – showed every region and every service group in growth. Assistant general secretary Liz Snape reported that November was a record recruitment month, with 18,000 people joining the union. And 75% of them joined online in a process that now takes less than three minutes. At the same time, 12,380 members left, giving a growth of just over 5,700 members in November...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 6, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article grovember NEC Source Type: news

Blog: Not just the biggest union, but a growing union
We did it – UNISON is officially the biggest union in the UK. It makes me incredibly proud to say that, because I know what it means. It means that despite a decade of austerity, pay cuts, job losses and attacks on the public sector, UNISON has remained strong. Through those long years when the UNISON’s decline was predicted, we thrived rather than just survived. It hasn’t been easy – far from it. Thanks to government cuts hacking away at the public sector in general, and local government in particular, UNISON has to recruit more than 100,000 new members every single year to remain strong. And that ...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 6, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Dave Prentis Tags: General secretary's blog News grovember Source Type: news

Save Our Services blog: The trading standards officer ’s tale
For SOS Day on 6 December, we asked our members working in safety-related roles, such as environmental health, trading standards, social services and many others, to tell us about the reality of working to keep their communities safe under years of austerity.   Here is the account of a trading standards officer working for a county council…    As a trading standards officer, I’m responsible for… …criminal investigations and prosecutions of offenders – mainly rogue traders who con the elderly and organised gangs who sell illegal tobacco through retail shops.     My...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 6, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Blogs SOS local government Save Our Local Services save our services Source Type: news

Redundancies raise their heads
UNISON branches in England and Wales are gearing up to defend members after the University of Gloucester and Cardiff University both announced plans for redundancies to deal with funding shortages. Gloucester warned unions at the weekend that it plans to cut 100 posts as it seeks to make savings of around £5m as part of its ‘Securing a Sustainable Future’ plan. The university has recently opened a new £16m business school, and a new sports centre is close to being completed. The local branch said it has been “aware for some time” that the university is trying to make savings, and had bee...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 5, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article education education services higher ed higher education redundancies redundancy universities Source Type: news

There for You winter fuel grants
Members living on a low income constantly struggle to make ends meet – and this can be particularly acute in the winter when the cost of heating homes rises as the outside temperature falls. But it’s not all bad news – help is available. The union’s welfare charity There for You has once more set up a limited fund to help members on low incomes towards the cost of their winter fuel bill through a one-off payment of £60. The process is very similar to previous years and an amount of money has been ring-fenced to support this initiative. However, once it’s gone it’s gone! So don&rsqu...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - December 3, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article activists branches there for you Winter Fuel Grants Source Type: news

UNISON comments on new guidance for creation of NHS subsidiary companies
Tuesday 27 November 2018 For immediate release UNISON comments on new guidance for creation of NHS subsidiary companies Commenting on the new guidance issued by NHS Improvement for trusts considering creating subsidiaries, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “The guidance is a step in the right direction but could have gone much further. “While there now is a requirement for trusts to report any plans for subsidiary companies, the guidance fails to ensure such plans are truly transparent and made public from the outset. Engaging with staff is a start but what is really needed is their fu...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 27, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release guidance healthcare NHS improvement NHS subcos Sara Gorton wholly owned subsidiaries Source Type: news

UNISON comments on Ailsa hospital attack
Following the serious assault of a female community support worker‎ at Ailsa Hospital in Ayr, UNISON president Gordon McKay, who worked at Ailsa Hospital for many years, said: “Our first thoughts are for the member of staff and her family. It is shocking that someone who is dedicated to providing high quality healthcare to the people of Scotland should be attacked at work. “In the longer term serious questions need to be asked and answered by senior management of NHS Ayrshire and Arran over why it would appear they were leading patients, relatives and staff in the hospital to believe that CCTV was operating...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 26, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: Press release health Source Type: news

Pay staff fairly to solve the crisis in care, says new report
Monday 26 November 2018 For immediate release Pay staff fairly to solve the crisis in care, says new report Commenting on Fair Care, a new report from the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) about the growing workforce crisis in adult social care, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “Low pay and a lack of funding are at the very heart of the social care crisis. “Cash-strapped councils don’t have enough to spend on care. So the firms who get the contracts end up squeezing staff wages. “Care workers on poverty pay have to put in very long hours, often across several jobs. It’s no...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 26, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release Source Type: news

Leicester University security team wins battle against cut to hours and pay
Members at UNISON’s University of Leicester branch are celebrating after the employer has dropped plans to cut the hours – and pay – of the university’s security team. The 26 workers affected would have seen pay cuts if the university had succeeded with its plan to cut their weekly hours from 37 to 35. All other staff at the university saw their hours drop to 35 a week, with no loss of pay, when the university became a living wage employer in 2016. But when it came to reducing the security team’s hours this year, the university decided to cut their wages too, meaning members who lose £80...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 23, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News East Midlands education services higher education Industrial action universities university of leicester Source Type: news

Cuts to school support staff could leave vulnerable children at risk
School support staff regularly go home worried about pupils’ welfare, safety and emotional state after discussing issues such as grooming, gangs, domestic violence, bullying, loneliness, and sexual abuse with them, according to a survey released by UNISON today (Friday). The research suggests that across the UK almost a quarter (24%) of school support staff involved in children’s welfare go home worried every day having spoken to pupils about the issues that trouble them both inside and outside of school. Almost nine in ten (86%) of support staff told UNISON they’d gone home worried about pupils after tal...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 23, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Anna Mauremootoo Tags: Press release stars in our schools survey Source Type: news

Wages, prices and bargaining
Money is getting tight. That’s a reality nearly everyone experiences – our wages just don’t seem buy the things they used to, especially after 10 years of austerity. But what do the actual figures say? UNISON’s bargaining support group regularly publishes information on key economic indicators and other data to support our activists in branches who negotiate with local employers. The latest is an exhaustive document covering bargaining on annual pay rises – and it contains a lot of information on average wages, pay rises and inflation over recent years and what’s likely to happen to...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 22, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: P.S data bargaining economy pay pay negotiating and bargaining Source Type: news

Giving children a voice
Only last month Karen was celebrating after winning the teaching and learning support staff category at the National Association for Special Educational Needs’ annual awards. The category is open to “anyone in a teaching and learning support role who has demonstrated commitment and excellent practice which has improved the outcomes for children and young people with special educational needs”. Karen (pictured above) has worked at St Giles for almost 18 years and described the awards ceremony, held at London’s Waldorf Hotel, as “a lovely evening. I met so many inspirational candidates. “I...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 21, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News deaf members East Midlands education stars in our schools Source Type: news

Let ’s walk and talk …
We’re two weeks into Grovember – UNISON’s month-long recruitment and retention project to grow our union. We’ve seen some great work with activists, staff, regions and branches ramping up recruitment and finding extra ways to do a bit more. It’s fantastic to see the union so visible in workplaces across the UK – and that’s what will  help our union grow. When people see us – active, confident and relevant, they join us. And our current members value their UNISON membership more too. It’s good for the whole union. So this week is being designated “Walk Round W...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 19, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article grovember recruiting recruiting and organising recruitment Source Type: news

‘ Thank you for making people ’ s lives better ’
“You improve people’s lives: you make people’s lives better.” That was at the heart of the message from UNISON president Gordon McKay when he addressed the union’s LGBT conference in Harrogate this morning. “Thank you for everything you do for our union and thank of everything you do for our members,” he said. “Who would be there for our members if it wasn’t you? You ensure they aren’t alone. You stand with them … and to me, most importantly, you give them the courage to find their own voice,” he added. Saying that much “depresses me that NI rem...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 18, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2018 LGBT Conference Gordon McKay Source Type: news

Cross-branch working and pensions concern conference
It was a busy morning in Harrogate today, as LGBT conference delegates debated a wide range of topics. For the national LGBT committee, Jaden Biggs explained the need to increase cross-branch working in increasingly diverse workplace environments. As an advance nurse practitioner who works closely with social workers, the ambulance service and others in their efforts to try to avoid hospital admissions, Jaden explained how working across branches is a coherent approach in such situations. A motion on ‘conversion therapy’, where (often) religious fundamentalists “prey on the vulnerable,” to ‘co...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 17, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2018 LGBT Conference equal marriage pensions Source Type: news

Delegates discuss international concerns
In one of a series of debates on international issues at UNISON’s LGBT conference in Harrogate, Bernie McGuire from the West Midlands highlighted the issue of Palestine and how support for the actions of the Israeli state is coming from “reactionary” regimes. For the national committee, Jackie Lewis pointed out that, on the 14 May, as Israel and the US celebrated the opening of the new US embassy in Jerusalem, unarmed protestors against the illegal, 11-year blockade of Gaza were being shot at and killed. She warned against pinkwashing – attempts by the Israeli state to portray itself as a liberal so...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 17, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2018 LGBT Conference colombia international Israel jamaica LGBT members Palestine Turkey Source Type: news

Fighting against low pay ‘ at the heart of UNISON ’ s agenda ’
Addressing LGBT conference, UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea looked back three decades to recall voices being sounded against unions fighting for equal pay for part-time workers – primarily because of a fear that that would negatively impact on the wages of full-time, predominantly male workers. That has changed, but Ms McAnea highlighted the need to keep the fight against low pay “at the very heart of our bargaining agenda” as the union heads into its 26th year in existence. “Now in the fourth industrial revolution,” with the rise of the gig economy, the speed with which wo...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 17, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News 2018 LGBT Conference care workers LGBT members Source Type: news

UNISON declares victory in Bradford redundancy row
UNISON has declared victory in a dispute with the University of Bradford over its plans for 250 redundancies, following four days of strike action last week. The university announced that 250 jobs were “at risk” of redundancy in June, sparking the industrial action process which culminated in last week’s strike. The workers also received support from local MPs Judith Cummins and Imran Hussain, who urged the university to enter talks and avoid a strike. The union says that the university management refused to enter into talks, and has so far refused to say how many jobs are actually being cut and staff mad...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 8, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article education services higher ed higher education Industrial action redundancies redundancy strike universities Source Type: news

UNISON celebrates becoming the UK ’s biggest union
  UNISON is marking becoming the UK’s biggest union by launching a month of recruitment activity today (Tuesday) to reach out to every worker in the country providing public services. The union has now more than 1.3 million people in its membership who work in education, local government, the NHS, the police service and the energy sector. Members work in both the public and private sectors. But there are still tens of thousands of public sector workers who aren’t part of a union. During the month of November – renamed Grovember in UNISON – the union’s reps will be working hard to attract ...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 6, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: Article activists dave prentis Source Type: news

‘ We can ’t sleepwalk into another Windrush ’
Images: Marcus Rose UNISON EU members urged the government to “truly safeguard” citizens’ rights, regardless of the final outcome of the Brexit negotiations, in a major Westminster rally and lobby yesterday They joined colleagues from citizens’ rights groups the3million and British in Europe to form a human chain from Parliament Square to Downing Street, where they presented a letter of demands to prime minister Theresa May. Later the campaigners met with their MPs in Westminster – where they found a cross-party selection of politicians very much on their side. With the UK set to leave th...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 6, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: matheoud Tags: Article News BREXIT EU Citizens NHS one team for patient care Source Type: news

Blog: A great opportunity to thank our whole incredible NHS team
This week is UNISON’s One Team week where we celebrate the whole team of staff who make the NHS work. NHS support staff make a vital contribution to the NHS every minute of every day, but often their work goes unnoticed. Most of the public don’t see the staff who work behind the scenes, whose vital work keeps the NHS running and who make sure patients and their families get the best treatment possible – so too often their vital roles are ignored. UNISON is proud to represent NHS support staff who make such a valuable contribution. They cook for patients, transport them around hospitals, maintain vital eq...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 5, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Dave Prentis Tags: General secretary's blog News one team Source Type: news

Turning over a new leaf – taking the fight for libraries to the streets
“Libraries are the heart of our communities,” UNISON’s London regional secretary Maggi Ferncombe told demonstrators at Saturday’s Save our Libraries event in Parliament Square. Several hundred people, from library workers to users, readers to writers, from young to old, gathered at the British Library and marched to Parliament Square, to protest against the crippling underfunding of the country’s arts and culture. Supporting the march, award-winning author, Philip Pullman said: “Our great museums and our once superb library service should be the very least we can do for our people. ...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 5, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Martin Cullen Tags: Article library and culture service local government love your libraries Save Our Local Services Source Type: news

Government should ensure public service staff get the living wage, says UNISON
Responding to the announcement today (Monday) that the real living wage is to increase nationally to £9 an hour and to £10.55 in London, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said: “The vast majority of local authority and NHS staff are now getting the living wage. This is thanks to pay agreements that UNISON has negotiated on their behalf. “But staff employed by contractors are increasingly being left behind, including many care workers. “Many are struggling on poverty pay despite the overwhelming pressures they’re facing. It’s time the government committed the funding so all staf...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 5, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release real living wage Source Type: news

There must be no hiding place for bullies in the ambulance service
There should soon be no hiding place for anyone who bullies their staff, or colleagues, at the South Western Ambulance Service (SWAS), following the publication today (Thursday) of an independent report, says UNISON. The report, based on a staff survey and interviews conducted by Professor Duncan Lewis, was jointly commissioned by UNISON and the ambulance trust. It follows a succession of serious complaints and grievances about the behaviour of managers and other employees at the ambulance service, says UNISON. Concerned that directors at the trust appeared to be ignoring or dismissing incidents of bullying, harassment and...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 1, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Anna Mauremootoo Tags: Press release alan lofthouse ambulance Source Type: news

A great October
Thousands of UNISON members across the country are better off after they and their union chalked up various victories in October. The month kicked off in fighting style, with traffic wardens – or civil enforcement officers to be technically correct – in the north London borough of Camden and care workers in Birmingham both embarking on strike action. In London, the union members were striking for a pay rise. In Birmingham, they were defending their jobs and hours from council cuts which see some lose nearly two thirds of their income. A two-day strike by hospital workers in Bolton, Lancashire, scored a clear v...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 1, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: News equal pay Industrial action legal services low pay NHS subcos wholly owned subsidiaries Source Type: news

Time for a hero – meet Greenwich ’ s answer to Erin Brockovich
In 2012 a school cleaner from Greenwich noticed an error in her pay, and despite being told by everyone she spoke to that she was mistaken, kept pushing for the problem to be fixed. This week at a council meeting in Greenwich, Julie Stedman has been vindicated. The culmination of a six-year battle means that not only will she receive the extra pay she is owed, but around 5,000 low-paid, mostly female, workers across the borough will receive payouts worth millions, in a case that also has implications for councils across England. It started in June 2012 when Julie was moved from a full-year to a term-time only contract, and...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - November 1, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Rosa Ellis Tags: Article Source Type: news

UNISON wins legal pay out for 5,000 low-paid women in schools and nurseries in Greenwich
Five thousand part-time cleaners, teaching assistants, catering, administrative, school meal workers and other staff working for Greenwich Council are to receive pay outs that could amount to hundreds of pounds, following a five year legal battle over holiday pay, says UNISON today (Wednesday). UNISON took the case on behalf of the Royal Boroughs employees the overwhelming majority of whom are women over the councils failure to calculate their annual leave properly. As a result some of the staff had been losing up to five days pay a year. Using European law, UNISON brought employment tribunal claims on behalf of 476 of the...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 31, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release Christina McAnea education employment tribunal Greenwich Legal local governemnt low-paid low-paid women nurseries school staff settlement Source Type: news

Conference debates access to voting, hate crime and BSL
A busy morning at UNISON’s disabled members’ conference continued with a debate on access to voting. Alvin Chambers of Newcastle City told delegates that “all voters have the right to vote independently and in secret … I know this, because the Electoral Commission says so on the website”. But as he went on to explain: “Good luck getting into the voting station if you’re in a wheelchair and, if you do get in, the polling booth probably won’t be accessible to you. “What if you’re blind and there’s no braille ballot paper?” In that case, the clerk at the...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 29, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News disability hate crime disabled members national disabled members' conference 2018 Source Type: news

Key council services need funding, Chancellor told
More than 100 MPs from various parties are backing a UNISON call for more money to tackle the crisis in local government services in Chancellor Philip Hammond’s Budget this afternoon. They have signed a UNISON open letter to the chancellor calling on him to increase the levels of central government grants to local authorities  and reinvest the surplus generated from business from business rates, giving the money back to local councils to assist with the social care funding gap. “We would like to stress the urgency of this situation,” says the letter,  “as councils across the country are fo...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 29, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article News budget local government local government and financing Source Type: news

Disabled members speak out over lack of proper disability leave
A busy final morning at UNISON’s disabled members’ conference in Brighton saw delegates work through a wide range of business. Moving a motion for the South East region, Fran Fox said that it is “recognised that employees with a disability” may need to take time off work “if their mobility or illness becomes severe”. But it is also recognised that a lack of understanding by some employers about disability leave can result in disabled employees facing “formal action” particularly around absences, though this contravenes the Equality Act. Kathleen Kennedy for the national commi...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 29, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News disabled members equality equality act national disabled members' conference 2018 Source Type: news

Widening disability pay gap shows the struggle for equality is far from over
Assistant general secretary Christina McAnea thanked the union’s disabled members for all the work they do when she addressed their conference in Brighton his morning, telling them that it iss vital to keep up the work, since the disability pay gap is now at its highest – 15% – since 2013. “In-work poverty is very real for too many of our members,” she said. “We know there is a clear link between poverty and disability … living with a disability, what it costs you to live your life, are higher.” Yet the government remains determined to make savings at whatever cost to people...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 29, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article News Christina McAnea disabled members national disabled members' conference 2018 Source Type: news

Delegates voice the need for mental health first aiders
A busy afternoon saw delegates to UNISON disabled members’ conference debate motions covering a wide range of issues. A group debate in Brighton around the need for mental health first aiders saw Steven Powers from the Northern region first clarify that “a mental health first aider can, with the correct training, listen to your concerns and get you the support that you need” – they would no more be handing out “happy pills” than a conventional first aider would be performing surgery. Mental health first aider Christine Jackson of Newcastle City branch told delegates that she had used the...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 28, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Amanda Kendal Tags: Article disabled members mental health mental health first aiders national disabled members' conference 2018 Source Type: news

Residents face losing essential services as council finance crisis deepens, say councillors
Councillors have warned about the dire state of local authority finances in a survey published today (Thursday) by UNISON. The vast majority (90%) say additional funding is needed and three quarters (75%) warn that their council has insufficient resources for providing essential good quality services, such as refuse collections. More than three quarters (76%) say budget cuts have affected service delivery. The findings are based on a survey of more than 700 councillors across England, Scotland and Wales, representing all the main political parties. The research, Councils on the Brink, raises fresh concerns that m...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 25, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release council cuts councillors councils on the Brink Jon Richards local authority finances local communities Source Type: news

Blog: Fighting for decent services, decent pay and decent jobs in Somerset
Local government has been under incredible strain during the austerity years, and whilst Theresa May might claim that austerity is over, the reality is that it’s anything but. Services have been cut, jobs have been lost, but still local councils are falling deeper and deeper into the financial mire. I’ve written several times before about Northamptonshire County Council, which is set to be abolished and divided up due to financial mismanagement. Today I visited another council which risks a similarly perilous state, with £14 million of additional in year cuts, piled onto of ongoing multi-million pound ann...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 23, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Dave Prentis Tags: General secretary's blog News Somerset Source Type: news

Blog: Signing a charter – and ticking off a pledge
It was a pleasure to be in Plymouth today to sign the Ethical Care Charter with Plymouth City Council. Plymouth joins the dozens of councils who have made a commitment to pay the living wage to care workers, guarantee training and ensure decent standards for those who need care in their homes. I signed the charter alongside Council Leader Tudor Evans and Councillor Ian Tuffin, and it was great to hear their passion for their city – and their plans for the future. Signing the Ethical Care Charter and delivering better care was one of Plymouth Labour’s 100 pledges at the recent local elections (where they took co...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 22, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Dave Prentis Tags: General secretary's blog News ethical care charter plymouth Source Type: news

Never too big to care
Grovember is just around the corner and with the resounding message that retention is just as important as recruitment for growing this great union, we’re thinking about the huge range of benefits the union offers UNISON is proud to be unique among unions in having a dedicated charity, There for You, which supports our members when life gets tough. But in order to receive that support, members have to know about it! So with impeccable timing, There for You is pleased to launch a brand new range of materials to help all of us to better identify and guide members in difficult circumstances, and attract new members with...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 22, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article activists grovember there for you unison welfare Source Type: news

Cleaners at the forefront of needlestick injuries
Almost two thirds of workers who successfully claim compensation for needlestick injuries are cleaners – mainly because the needles weren’t correctly disposed. “These figures are a timely reminder of the risks to health and safety posed by used needlesticks, and how they can affect staff in all sectors, and not just clinical staff,” warned UNISON assistant national health and safety officer Robert Baughan. He was speaking at the start of European Health and Safety Week, which focuses this year on hazardous substances. A UNISON analysis of nearly 100 successful compensation claims for needlestick inj...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 22, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Tony Braisby Tags: Article Eurohsweek european health and safety week health and safety reps needlesticks Source Type: news

Extortionate parking charges and fines for health staff, patients and visitors must stop, says UNISON
  Healthcare staff are wasting valuable time searching for parking spaces and two-thirds (64%) have been fined when trying to park at work, according to a survey published today (Sunday) by UNISON. More than three in five (63%) NHS staff say they have to pay for parking permits, in some cases costing £100 or more a month. But hardly any – just 8% – have a guaranteed space. As a result, more than half (54%) can end up being late for work, with some spending an hour a day looking for a space, and one in five (21%) up to 30 minutes doing so. Almost two-thirds (63%) have no option but to seek alternative...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 22, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release hospital car parking charter hospital parking NHS parking charges parking fines Sara Gorton Source Type: news

Further education cuts threaten sustainability of UK businesses, says UNISON
Responding to analysis by the Labour Party showing that spending on further education and skills fell by £3.3billion in real terms between 2010-11 and 2017-18, UNISON head of education Jon Richards, said: “Further education should not be at the bottom of the pecking order when it comes to investment. “Colleges play a vital role in bridging the skills gap that threatens the sustainability of businesses in the UK. “Across the country we are seeing support staff jobs being cut, putting added pressure on the remaining employees. Long-term investment is needed so colleges can plan to meet the needs of st...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 18, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Charlotte Jeffs Tags: News Press release cuts fe further education Jon Richards Labour Party Source Type: news

Staff with caring responsibilities need supporting at work, says UNISON
Parents and other staff with caring duties are having to quit their jobs in some cases because of inflexible working conditions, according to research published today (Thursday) by UNISON. Nearly half (47%) the survey respondents say they think employers discriminate against employees who are responsible for looking after loved ones. More than three quarters (78%) also believe that staying in a job is harder for carers or parents. The findings are based on results from nearly 3,000 respondents across the UK, including employees with caring responsibilities (88%) who have either looked after an adult or are a parent, i...
Source: UNISON meat hygiene - October 17, 2018 Category: Food Science Authors: Anna Mauremootoo Tags: Press release carers Christina McAnea employers parents Source Type: news