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UNISON is Britain's biggest and brightest trade union with a membership of over 1.3 million. Yorkshire & Humberside region alone has over 145,000 members. Our members are people working in the public services, for private contractors providing public services and in the essential utilities. They include frontline staff and managers working full or part time in local authorities, the NHS, the police service, colleges and schools, the electricity, gas and water industries, transport and the voluntary sector.

UNISON members take action for fair pay - July 10 2014

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#J10 National Strike in Yorkshire & Humberside - 10 July 2014 (23/07/14)

Thousands of UNISON members in Yorkshire and Humberside joined colleagues from the GMB and UNITE in a national one-day strike over pay.

Rallies and protests were held across the region – and the rest of the country – as local government and education workers demanded fair pay.

The strikers have endured four years of Government pay freezes – in real terms pay cuts because of rising prices – and have been offered a below inflation pay rise this year.

UNISON’s Head of Local Government in Yorkshire and Humberside, Chris Jenkinson, said: “Our members are suffering real hardship because their already low pay has been shrunk by the Government’s attack on public sector funding.

“It takes a great deal for these dedicated public servants to strike but they are now desperate and at the end of their tether.

“They struggle more each year to meet the very basic costs of food, housing , gas and electricity.

“On the eve of the strike Tory minister Matt Hancock threatened our members with four more years of real terms pay cuts.

“This government abandons economic common sense because of an ideological hatred of the public sector.

“But these cuts have a devastating knock on effect on private sector businesses and jobs as well. The policy destroys people’s lives and rips whole communities apart."


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Wanted: Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Scarborough and Whitby Labour Party (24/07/14)

Scarborough and Whitby PPC


 

HMIC Report Comfirms UNISON fears over demise of Neighbourhood Policing (22/07/14)

Today’s HMIC Report ‘Policing in Austerity: Meeting the Challenge’ bears out UNISON research showing that more than 3,500 front line police community support officer (PCSO) jobs in England have gone since the start of the coalition government. 

This is despite a commitment from ministers to protect front line policing.

In its report, HMIC expresses concern over the ability of forces to carry out neighbourhood policing. The report goes on to confirm that PCSO numbers have been slashed by 22%, with 10 forces cutting numbers well above the general 20% cut to police budgets.

UNISON's research, published in its Trouble in the Neighbourhood report, shows that nine police forces have cut more than 20% of their PCSOs. This includes a 49% reduction in the Metropolitan police, a loss of 2,280 PCSOs in the capital, almost two thirds of the overall cut, 31% in Merseyside and 28% in Essex.*

Only five police forces out of the 39 in England have maintained or increased their number of PCSOs. ** 

The UNISON research also reveals that 60% of UNISON members working as PCSOs had seen cuts in staff or resources in their police force. ***

As well as a reduction in the number of PCSOs, cuts in supporting roles also impact on front line policing as PCSOs often find themselves covering for these roles and spending less time out in the community.

Ben Priestley, UNISON National Officer said:

“Today's report is yet further proof that neighbourhood policing is dying on the beat. Cuts to neighbourhood teams are putting public safety and confidence in our police in jeopardy. 

"PSCOs play a key role in intelligence gathering, tackling minor crimes and anti social behaviour. They are a reassuring and deterring visible presence in our streets and without them crime is likely to rise, but they are under growing pressure to cover larger beats and often work alone. That is why UNISON is again calling on the Government to fund and maintain neighbourhood policing teams at their 2010 level."

Comments from PCSOs: 

“On my own Safer Community Team, numbers have been cut from 9 to 2; an 80% cut. All of the work we have done over the last decade is unravelling and we are powerless to stop it. Morale is at rock bottom.”

“We now have less staff and higher expectations from the public that cannot be met."

“At times there are very few officers on the street due to cuts. It's a struggle to deal with all the jobs that get called in.”

“Crime prevention officers and practical resources have gone. Posts are not being filled when they become available”
  
“We no longer work as a team and are left to work alone on a late evening... there is no back up close by if anything should go wrong, so this leaves the PCSO vulnerable.”

“Drastic reduction in vehicles which doesn’t directly impact on PCSOs, but means that warranted officers are further away should we require support. Larger neighbourhoods mean that PCSOs have to travel further on foot and operate more often as a solo foot patrol.”

In contrast to England, there has been a 57% rise in the number of PCSOs in Wales, with an extra 409 posts created, with dedicated funding from the Welsh Government.

* PCSO cuts have been 20% or higher in the following nine police forces:
City of London:         -71.15%
Met Police:               -49.09%
Merseyside:             -31.41%
Essex:                     -28.54%
Cumbria:                  -22.52%
Warwickshire:          -22.46%
Cambridgeshire:        -21.05%
Hertfordshire:             -20.99%
Northamptonshire:     -20.73%

** 87 PCSO jobs were created in England since March 2010.
1 in Wiltshire, 3 in Leicestershire, 24 in Nottinghamshire, 59 in Devon and Cornwall

*** UNISON represents around 6,000 PCSOs in England and Wales. 1,900 of them responded to the online survey – a response rate of almost 30%

The full HMIC report is available here:
http://www.hmic.gov.uk/publication/policing-in-austerity-meeting-the-challenge/

 


 

Doncaster Care UK workers vote for further 14 days strike over pay (22/07/14)

Care workers in Doncaster will start 14 days’ strike action from 7 a.m. on Tuesday July 29.

The UNISON members voted for the action to support the pay claim for Care UK to introduce the national living wage rate of £7.65 an hour – above their current rate of just £7 – and a meaningful pay rise for all staff.

The latest action means the strikers will have taken a total of 48 days strike action since September 1 last year.

Regional Organiser Jim Bell said members at the company had suffered four years of pay freezes when they were employed in the public sector.

In addition, Care UK has slashed income by attacking income and conditions of service.
He said: “In total they have seen their pay cut by up to to 35 per cent in this period which is a massive hit and makes it impossible for them to meet the most basic costs of living.
“We are calling on Care UK to give them a meaningful pay rise and start the minimum pay rate at £7.65

“Care UK makes profits from bidding for publicly owned and tax payer funded public services. It then pays our members so little that they often have to turn to tax payer funded benefits just to survive.

“The company is making huge profits subsidised by all of us who pay tax. Meanwhile these most dedicated of public servants, who care for the most vulnerable people in society, are forced into crippling financial hardship.

“The company has forced our members to take strike action. They do this reluctantly and it causes great personal hardship and anxiety.

“But they are trying to protect the service they provide because if the company will not pay a fair rate, skilled and dedicated staff are forced to seek work elsewhere. It is the vulnerable clients and their families who will suffer terribly.”  

For further information contact Jim Bell on 07944 191 738 or Peter Carroll on 07785 620 422


JOB VACANCY: Part-time Project Worker (Closing Fri 25 July 2014) (07/07/14)

Temporary Part-Time Project Worker [funded by the Union Learning Fund].
Yorkshire & Humberside Region.

  • Salary £34,112 pro-rata to hours worked plus travelling expenses and subsistence allowance.
  • 25 Hours per week [temporary fixed term contract up to 31st March 2015].
  • Location - UNISON Regional Office in Leeds.

The postholder will lead a project aimed at promoting progression routes and continuous professional development opportunities for staff in the Health and Social Care sector, primarily those in the lower grades.

The successful applicant will have the skills and knowledge to work effectively with UNISON’s learning provider partners and employers in the public and private sectors.

The post is funded by the Union Learning Fund [ULF] and the project will run until the 31st March 2015.

For more details and an application form please email Y&H.personnel@unison.co.uk.

An application form can be downloaded from the link below.

PDF version
Word version

Applications can be submitted by email to Y&H.personnel@unison.co.uk or by post to
UNISON, Yorkshire & Humberside Region, Commerce House, Wade lane, Leeds, LS2 8NJ

Closing date for applications – Friday 25th July 2014
(This closing date has been extended)



Privatisation & job cuts confirmed Calderdale & Huddersfield NHS (26/06/14)

Privatisation & Job Cuts and Terms & Conditions attack confirmed at Calderdale & Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust.

Official document confirms huge cuts and privatisation plans at Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust

A report to C&H NHS Trust today confirms UNISON’s claim that they are planning huge job losses and pay cuts – and to advertise for private patients both here and overseas.
Last week UNISON claimed the plans were in place but the Trust flatly denied they had any such proposals.

The Trust’s Director of Estates, Planning Performance and Facilities, Lesley Hill, told the Huddersfield Examiner that there was “absolutely no truth” that the Trust planned to privatise up to 300 beds.

But now a report issued by the Trust’s Director of Operations Mags Barnaby to the Executive Board spells out their true intention.

Under a heading “Proposed Additional Schemes to Close The Gap”, the report states that the Trust must  ‘* Attract appropriate income from overseas visitors to the Trust.  * Explore opportunities for private patient income.’

The report also says the Trust must implement central Government cuts of £20 million this financial year and £19 million in 2015/16.

UNISON Regional Organiser Gary Cleaver said: “The scale of job losses which are envisioned in this shocking report will have a devastating impact on our members and their families.

“It will also put standards of patient care in grave jeopardy. Standards of health care will inevitably plummet, with longer waiting times from referral to treatment.

“ It will put lives at risk at the same time they are selling off NHS beds to private patients from across the world.

“The proposed savage cuts to our members’ terms and conditions include removing weekend pay rates and reducing pay for members on long-term sickness absence.
“The Trust has identified that by implementing the crippling cuts, there will be an effect on the quantity and quality of job applications received for NHS jobs.”

Mr Cleaver said people will be deeply alarmed to learn from the report that there are additional plans to sell off land and buildings which have been owned by the public for over 65 years.

The report makes it clear that within the next two years the number of NHS beds in both hospitals will be cut by 100 – and that is before the outcome of Trust’s Strategic Review.
“The Trust is implementing massive NHS cuts forced on us by the Conservative/Lib Dem Government,” he added.

“Their manifesto pledge that their “austerity” cuts would not have an impact on front-line NHS services is completely untrue, as we can see from this report.
“Cuts and privatisation are firmly on Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust’s agenda.

“UNISON calls on the Trust to come clean with us over their plans and to arrange, urgently, a full and open consultation with the public and the trade unions now that these proposals are in the public domain.”


Care UK strikers lobby private equity owners (14/05/14)

UNISON members

UNISON members working for Care UK took their struggle to London today, where they lobbied Bridgepoint Capital, the private equity investor that bought the company in 2010.

Care UK was handed a contract by Doncaster Council in 2013 to take over care of vulnerable people with severe learning difficulties, and has since announced that it wants to slash staff pay and conditions.

Straining to make himself heard over the sound as 53 angry members made their case outside its headquarters in posh Mayfair, UNISON regional organiser Jim Bell said that Bridgepoint Capital eventually allowed himself and a member into the building to make their case briefly.

The members were also determined to use their visit to take their case right to the heart of government at Downing Street.

General secretary Dave Prentis joined the strikers in Doncaster yesterday on their 23rd day of strike action.

Praising their "courage and self-sacrifice", he noted that they were "also fighting to preserve a service to some of the most vulnerable people in society."

UNISON has tried to negotiate with Care UK, which is refusing to change its position. A ballot of 150 UNISON members saw 90% voting for action and members have already taken several periods of sustained strike action, as well as action short of a strike.

The strikers will be holding a demonstration in Doncaster this Saturday, at the Civic Square, Waterdale, from 2pm, with speakers from UNISON, together with other unions and campaigners.

UNISON is asking branches to support our members by making donations to the hardship fund and to help these workers continue their fight.


Y&H Regional Black Members Upcoming meetings published (25/04/14)

You can find a list of meeting dates and training opportunities here...


 

UNISON Personal Assistants Support Network (04/03/14)

pa

Personal Assistants (PAs) provide support and care for people who have social care needs. But who supports the PAs?

UNISON is the union for Personal Assistants, and this web site is here to make sure PAs have a place to come to find out about their rights and share experiences.

UNISON want to establish a network so PAs can share experiences, mentor and support each other. You can join the community for free by visiting the website
www.pa-unison.org.uk and signing up.

This site is about building an online community of Personal Assistants.

  • UNISON acknowledge that this kind of work can be isolating.
  • The site is designed to provide information and guidance on issues that face Personal Assistants.
  • UNISON want to offer Personal Assistants the chance to share ideas and best practice.

WEB: www.pa-unison.org.uk
TWITTER: @unison_pa
FACEBOOK: UNISON Personal Assistants


Regional Education Programme 2014 published (26/11/13)

Education programme 2014Once again we have endeavoured to offer courses to suit everyone, as Lifelong Learning is still high on our agenda. We have courses tailored to the needs of activists and members alike and there are a number of new courses designed to further develop the skills of our activists.

In addition to our Regional Education Team our new Area and Local Organisers are working with branches, among the other organising duties they undertake, to develop Lifelong learning.

The programme is designed to help you and your branch. UNISON needs more, better equipped and motivated activists. The courses provided are aimed at building confidence and developing abilities.

Courses are available for potential, new and more experienced activists seeking to improve their knowledge and skills. We are sure that both you and UNISON will benefit from the experience. It is never too late to learn.

Download the 2013 Education Programme and 2013 Calendar here...


UNISON Y&H Doncaster Raceday 2014


Doncaster Raceday 2014

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