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

Saturday, 29 May 2010

Glasgow Culture and Sport workers strike against pay cuts

Glasgow Culture and Sport workers are staging two days of strike over the holiday weekend in protest at cuts in pay and conditions. The timing of the strike highlights specific cuts to overtime and public holiday rates. Two previous strikes have closed iconic venues like the Kelvingrove Museum, the Burrell Collection and the People's Palace, with libraries and community centres also closing.

CGIL calls for europe-wide protests against austerity budgets‏

CGIL, Italy's largest trade union centre, (its public services federation has a formal alliance with UNISON) is urging its counterparts around Europe to join together in joint protests against austerity budgets in various countries.

The Wealth of the Destitute by Denise Levertov‏

How gray and hard the brown feet of the wretched of the earth.
How confidently the crippled from birth
push themselves through the streets, deep in their lives.

North West UNISON backs 2010 Arab British Culture & Society Award winners‏

UNISON North West Regional Secretary Frank Hont recently accompanied officials of the Liverpool Arabic Arts Festival (LAAF) when they were presented with the 2010 Arab British Culture & Society Award at an event in central London. UNISON North West is a sponsor of LAAF.

Friday, 28 May 2010

BA anti-union discrimination could put UK government in the dock‏

Professor Keith Ewing writing on the Guardian website gives an overview of recent landmark decisions of the european court of human rights.

Thursday, 27 May 2010

French unions protest against pension reforms‏

Demonstrations and protests will be held in all parts of France today in protest at regressive Government plans to extend the retirement age. http://www.france24.com/en/20100525-government-push-unpopular-retirement-age-hike-nicolas-sarkozy

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Why we shouldn't sleep walk into privatisation of education‏

The Con Dem coalition will start today the process of writing to all schools asking if they wish to become an Academy or an ‘Independent Free’ school. The ink has not yet dried on the Queens Speech, and there is a paucity of detail contain within the proposed Education Bill, but this will not prevent the Con Dems throwing all resources into persuading schools that they are better off out of local education authority (LEA) control.

'Dismal Queen's Speech' says Prentis‏

Dave Prentis, UNISON General Secretary in a comprehensive response to yesterday’s Queen’s Speech said that “the plans set out in this dismal Queen’s Speech spell danger for public services and for economic growth and offer little hope to either the young or long-term jobless.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Queen's Speech - What it said and what it really means for you


Con Dem cuts - Manchester members speak out on Radio 4 PM programme‏

Go to 38 mins on this BBC IPlayer recording of yesterday afternoon’s PM news programme to hear the instant reaction of UNISON members in Manchester to yesterday’s announcement of £6.2bn public spending cuts.

Local Government Cuts - There ain't nothing like a Dame!‏

The oddly delivered Treasury report announced to the press before Parliament and in advance of the Queens Speech  (how rude are they?) was littered with cuts for local government. http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/d/press_04_10.pdf

UNISON GS election - the self serving conceit of a "worker's wage"‏

It is not uncommon in union leadership elections for ultra left challengers to stand on a platform of an unspecified “worker’s wage.” True to form UNISON members will have come across similar rhetoric when reading the election addresses in the current General Secretary election.

50,000 jobs to go……'a dreadful day for the British people'

Well the Coalition of Con Dems have fulfilled their first promise. They said they would cut, and by god they have done it. Over 6 billion cut from public spending, but Laws, who up until three weeks ago did not see the need for cuts “immediately” stood proudly beside George Osborne as the statement was made.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Civil service bears brunt of Osborne's £6.2bn cuts but outlook bleak for council jobs‏

Breaking news from the FT which reports that in “announcing an initial £6.2bn of cuts for the current financial year, Mr Osborne said it was important to cut the deficit urgently so that debt repayments did not “spiral out of control.”‬‪ Those departments taking the brunt of the cuts include business (£836m), communities and local government (£780m), transport (£683m), work and pensions, (£535m), education (£670m), the chancellors’ departments (£451m) and the devolved administrations (£704m).‬‪‬‪”

Irresponsibility of the ultra left - a response‏

Its easier to pretend to be angry for others than to get of your knees yourself. As a trade unionist I don't waste much breath on little groups that have no bearing on normal people with normal jobs and normal lives. The population ignores them and so should we.

UNISON Northern region in Observer cuts feature‏

Ahead of the new Government's massive £6bn year-one cuts in public spending, yesterday's Observer carried an analysis of the likely impact on the working class heartlands of north east England.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

The irresponsibility of the ultra left‏

Real world trade unionists are acutely aware that we secure maximum leverage in a dispute when the threat of industrial action is bearing down on the employer. This is particularly the case in the long running high stakes British Airways dispute where cabin crew workers have been on the receiving end of ruthless victimisation, redolent of Murdoch at News International and McGregor at the National Coal Board. And efforts by the union to secure a negotiated settlement have been hamstrung by the anti union laws.

Democracy by Harold Pinter‏

There's no escape.
The big pricks are out.
They'll fuck everything in sight.
Watch your back.
Harold Pinter