UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.
Saturday, 18 June 2011
"Hello, and many thanks for publishing my poem, 'On the Tideline', on the Unison website. I discovered it by pure accident - where did you come across it? I'm delighted that somebody at Unison liked it and wish you every success in your campaign against the cuts". Merryn Williams. Click http://a-gender.org/poets/merryn-williams to visit Merryn's website to discover more of her poetry.
Delegates will arrive in Manchester for this year’s Local Government Service Group Conference #uNDC11 after a year of relentless onslaught from the Coalition Government.
The suddenly ubiquitous former Labour MEP Richard Balfe, who following his defection to the Tories was appointed by David Cameron to liaise with the unions, this morning told Radio 4's Today programme that public sector workers were "lucky" the Government had not already decided to bring in direct contribution pensions in line with most of the private sector. http://www.politicshome.com/uk/story/17934/
#uNDC11 Ahead of next week’s Conference, the Guardian publishes a wide ranging interview with UNISON General Secretary Dave Prentis on pensions, cuts and privatisation. Commenting optimistically on the prospect of national industrial action Dave says: "It will be the biggest since the general strike. It won't be the miners' strike. We are going to win." http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/jun/18/biggest-strike-100-years-union
Heather Wakefield, UNISON national secretary for local government, writing in her regular Public Finance blog, comments on an internal audit report in the London Borough of Barnet which has highlighted serious concerns over procurement processes: http://opinion.publicfinance.co.uk/2011/06/barnet-not-so-fair/
Friday, 17 June 2011
UNISON, Unite, the City Council and representatives from ACAS met for nine hours yesterday. The joint UNISON / Unite Strike Committee met this lunch-time (Friday 17 June) and agreed that industrial action would continue - see full details at http://www.tweetdeck.com/twitter/SotonUnison/~66j8B and http://www.soton-unison-office.org.uk/
Danny Alexander trailed his speech on Public Sector Pensions in the Telegraph as a firm statement of the Government’s position, a heroic attempt to nail the Tory colours to the mast, to tell public sector workers like it is.
Readers of Treasury Secretary Danny Alexander’s spin in today’s Daily Telegraph would be forgiven for not realising that in 2005 major reforms to the UK’s public sector pensions were made in agreement between the trade unions and the then Labour Government. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/8580934/Make-no-mistake-we-will-reform-public-sector-pensions.html
Residents and politicans from Kilmarnock's Onthank area have slammed the BBC's decision to repeat 'The Scheme' documentary nationwide. http://www.eveningtimes.co.uk/news/fury-grows-over-the-scheme-1.1107044
Thursday, 16 June 2011
Working together for Palestine Saturday 9th July, 10am-5pm, University of London Union, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HY - Palestine Solidarity Campaign. “We are the people and this is our time: stand up, sing out … for Palestine”
The stupidity of humans knows no bounds. But we must take some of the blame for failing to understand how our crazed debt based money system works and how to rectify it or fail to campaign for change.
Wednesday, 15 June 2011
The response to the Government's Health White Paper showed the level of anger at plans to dismantle the NHS, and hand it over to profiteers: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/nhs-reform-scaled-back-after-review-2297267.html
Unions are mounting a 24-hour anti-austerity strike today as the Greek Government moves to implement a new 2012-2015 austerity programme to secure €28bn cuts following the EU/IMF bail out:
Richard Seymour writing in Comment is Free gives a useful analysis of the looming confrontation between the Con Dem Government and public sector unions over pensions and other austerity measures. However it is marred by an ill informed reference to UNISON having ‘thus far retreated from outright conflict with the government’ http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jun/14/nut-atl-vote-unionised-public-sector-workers
Tuesday, 14 June 2011
In an incredibly unprincipled pitch to Daily Mail reading middle England, Ed Miliband boldly claims that Labour is no longer the party of benefits cheats at a time when benefit claimants face unprecedented attacks from the Con Dem Government welfare reforms. Surely there's some mistake here?
Monday, 13 June 2011
The Labour Party is now officially at war again. From Polly Toynbee in Saturday’s Guardian, through the 2revelations” in the Sunday Telegraph, to Rawnsley in the Observer or Rentoul in the Independent, comes the news that the Miliband brothers are officially NOT TALKING while Ed Balls’ private papers have been splashed over the media.
'We do not need to the US or Israel to give us these rights. We were born with them. We don’t need to negotiate for them, because they’re non-negotiable', writes Susan Abulhawa in a moving and eloquent piece in the Palestine Chronicle following Obama's recent speeches. It is a must read. http://palestinechronicle.com/view_article_details.php?id=16907
It is a sad reflection on Labour that - at a time when the Con Dem Government is divided on NHS reforms, in crisis on adult social care, making hundreds of thousands of public service workers redundant, poised to destroy the pension rights of generations and paralysed on reform of party finances - the 'official opposition' is only newsworthy because of the internal machinations of its wholly inadequate leadership.
Sunday, 12 June 2011
The groundbreaking UNISON report on The Rise of the "Public Services Industry", written by Paul Gosling, has just been updated. This essential resource now deals with Con Dem Government policy, the planned intensification of privatisation in services such as the NHS and, topically, the crisis in adult social care: Download the report here and see report on InsideHousing http://tinyurl.com/3vgwt87