UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Tories in vanguard of attack on NHS workforce‏

According to the FT, Andrew Lansley, the Conservative Party health spokesman, has called on he Office of Fair Trading to investigate Government policy that NHS organisations should be the "preferred provider" of NHS care.

Million Man March Poem by Maya Angelou‏

The night has been long,
The wound has been deep,
The pit has been dark,
And the walls have been steep.

From membership to leadership: How to advance women in decision-making positions in trade unions‏

An increasing number of female workers are joining the ranks of trade unions throughout Europe. According to this year’s ETUC 8th March Survey, women account for around 45% of the trade union membership of the European Trade Union Confederation ( ETUC), which is an increase of 3 per cent since 2006. This tendency reflects the higher participation of women in employment, although gaps remain high in every Member State.

Friday, 5 March 2010

“It’s the rich wot get the pleasure…” MPs set to get pay rise of £1000. UNISONActive says - ask them why

After a year in which the British Public has been astounded and disgusted by the levels of greed and avarice that have been displayed by the pigs in the trough at Westminster, comes the news that we have all been waiting to hear. MPs are to be given a rise of 1.5%, taking their basic pay to £65,000.

Prentis slams pay hypocrisy of pig trough MP's

UNISON General Secretary has slammed the hypocrisy of those MP's picking up a £ 1000 (1.5%) pay rise while imposing pay feezes on milions of public sector workers.

Public sector unions strike against austerity measures in Portugal‏

Yesterday, Portuguese public sector unions staged a 24 hour strike against a pay freeze and other austerity measures imposed by the ‘Socialist’ led Government. All public services including hospitals, schools and transport were severely disrupted as over 400 000 workers took part in the stoppage. http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/news/content/view/full/87571

STUC Visits China

Following the visit of representatives of the ACFTU ( All China Federation of Trade Unions) to STUC Annual Congress in April 2009, the STUC received an invitation from the ACFTU to visit China. A delegation of senior members of the STUC General Council visited China from 17-22 January, 2010.

East Midlands region nominates Dave Prentis for UNISON GS‏

The annual general meeting of the Regional Committee in UNISON’s 100 000 strong region East Midlands today backed Dave Prentis in the General Secretary election. At the Nottingham meeting there was overwhelming support for Dave – East Midlands is the 7th of the 12 UNISON regions to back Dave with the remaining 5 due to meet in March.
Why we're backing Dave Prentis . Dave Prentis election website

Thursday, 4 March 2010

LGPS – facts are stubborn things‏

On the Public Finance website Heather Wakefield, UNISON national secretary for local government, sets out the basic facts about the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS:
The LGPS – unlike other ‘pay as you go’ public sector pension schemes – is a funded scheme
In 2008, the combined value of the assets of the 101 funds was £143bn – yes billion
That makes it: equivalent to around 10% of the UK’s GDP…
…Or the fourth largest pension scheme in the world, if you prefer
For more antidotes to Taxpayers’ Alliance hysteria go to:

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Over and out‏

The latest TUC research estimates that over a quarter of public sector workers indulge in ‘extreme overtime’ compared with one in six in the private sector. This should be a sobering statistic for trade unions. Not least the startling fact that those working the most unpaid hours will effectively worked the first four months of the year for free contributing a worth of some £27.4 billion to the UK economy - a fact ignored in employer moans about sickness absence levels. http://www.tuc.org.uk/work_life/tuc-17614-f0.cfm

New poll gives more evidence of public opposition to cuts‏

The public believe that deep cuts in public spending from the next government would be a greater worry than failing to reduce the deficit quickly enough. More voters are worried about the next government cutting spending too deeply than failing to reduce the £178 billion public deficit fast enough. new PoliticsHome research has revealed.

Ver.di strike action secures public sector pay agreement in Germany‏

The German services union Ver.di has secured a national pay rise for 2 million German public sector workers following ‘warning strikes’ by over 100,000 German public sector workers last month.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Trade unionists debate Australian Labor Party affiliation‏

In Australia a debate has opened up on the link between trade unions and the Australian Labor Party.

Global recognition for Inez McCormack, former UNISON regional secretary, as leading social activist‏

Inez McCormack, former UNISON regional secretary in Northern Ireland, and a leading campaigner for peace and social justice during the political conflict has received international recognition in unconventional fashion. Her life story will be told by actress Meryl Streep as part of a three-day New York festival called "Women in the World".

Monday, 1 March 2010

Vote now to mobilise the power of your pension fund - It's Your Money!‏

Pension fund democracy has begun. Since last week, more than 1,200 people have gone online to register a protest with their pension fund about BP's and Shell's involvement in exploiting Canadian tar sands. More than a thousand people have already registered their protest over Shell and BP's tar sands involvement. You can add your voice to this at  http://fairpensions.org.uk/unison/tarsands Click on the link – put the name of your employer in the search box – follow instructions and it will send an automated email to your fund administrator.

Making the economic case for public sector employment‏

UNISON branch officers engaging in the debate on local government job cuts will find useful arguments in the APSE/CLES/INLOGOV publication: ‘creating resilient local economies: exploring the economic footprint of public services’.

BBC survey highlights threat to 25 000 Council jobs‏

Today the BBC is hosting ‘a national conversation’ about the spending choices faced by town, county and city halls. Every local radio station in England will be hosting a live debate at 10.00am.

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Going cheap by Benjamin Zeppaniah‏

A dollar head shouts ‘Buy’,
A pound head shouts ‘Sell’,
A shopkeeper’s shouting ‘Capitalism will eat itself’,
A prophet’s asking ‘When?’

Social and Communitarian Minga continues to walk the word

More than 500 representatives of social organisations from all over the country met in Santander department, Northeast Colombia from 19 to 21 February to define the Minga’s agenda for 2010. The participants in three days of intense debate were indigenous, Afro-Colombian and Campesino community members, trade unionists, miners, students, women’s groups, human rights defenders, youth organisations, petrol workers and urban community organisation representatives.