UNISON International Relations Newsletter

The UNISON International Relations Newsletter provides updates on UNISON’s international work, reports on international matters affecting workers and trade unionists, and keeps BIROs informed of related developments, publications of reports and briefing documents, as well as upcoming nationwide events relevant to the union’s international work.

Talking about Palestinian rights:

A UNISON guide for activists This new briefing aims to provide activists with a better understanding of the situation in the occupied Palestinian territory, with a particular emphasis on human and workers’ rights and public services. It provides a background to UNISON’s policy on Palestine and the key information activists need to discuss the situation and campaign from a public service trade union perspective.

Download the ‘Talking about Palestinian rights’ briefing  

Save the Date: UNISON International Seminar 2022

UNISON’s International Seminar will take place from Friday 25 March to Sunday 27 March 2022 at UNISON Croyde Bay in Devon. The seminar will help branch international relations officers (BIROs) gain a better understanding of UNISON’s international policies and how to implement them in the branches. They will also learn more about the role of the BIRO.

We will send you further details when registration for the seminar opens in January.  

Turkey: Send a solidarity message to Gonul Erden

Gonul Erden is the former president of the Turkish health workers union SES. She was arrested on 25 May along with seven other current and former leaders of the union for alleged membership and leadership of a terrorist organisation. The eight accused were initially released on bail, but Gonul was rearrested and returned to prison after the prosecutor appealed the decision. Trade unionists in Turkey are regularly arrested and accused of terrorist offences for defending workers’ rights.

Gonul is a great friend of UNISON and was a guest at our national delegate conference in 2018. We know that messages of solidarity from UNISON branches to Gonul will mean a great deal to her whilst she is in prison. Please send your message to i.relations@unison.co.uk and we will forward it on to our colleagues in Turkey.  

Palestine Webinar Solidarity with MAAN members at Ta’aman Foods

Monday, 20 December 2021, 4.30pm Hear from MAAN leaders and members of the Ta’aman workers committee about the  struggle of Palestinian workers at Ta’aman Foods, located in the industrial zone of the Mishor Adumim in the occupied West Bank.

Join the webinar at 4.30pm on Monday, 20 December.

Read more about the recent strike and MAAN’s work to organise Palestinian workers in the settlements, which is supported by the UNISON International Development Fund.  

Electronics Watch Webinars

Electronics Watch, with the influence and support of UNISON, has committed to do much more to focus on and build its capacity to support electronics workers to form and join trade unions of their choosing and to collectively bargain better pay, terms and conditions with their employers.  And with their innovative public sector affiliation model that uses the power of public buying to influence anti-union employers you really can make a difference through your workplace by encouraging your employer to affiliate to Electronics Watch. 

Between all the seasonal (hopeful) celebrations, why not listen to these excellent Electronics Watch webinars to understand more about the power of public procurement.  We recommend them in this order: Freedom of Association, Climate Justice and Modern Slavery What is Freedom of Association, challenges to organising in global supply chains How to remedy violations of Freedom of Association For those who really find this fascinating, two other webinars exist on the YouTube site focused on these issues, along with many others. 

We really hope this inspires you to encourage your branch to raise this with your employer. For support to do this, please contact i.relations@unison.co.uk.    

UNISON’s International Affiliations: Palestine Solidarity Campaign  

PSC is the largest movement in the UK campaigning for Palestinian rights.  For many years PSC has worked closely with UNISON to further our work.

UNISON’s NEC international committee encourages all branches to affiliate to PSC and support their vital work, campaigning for Palestinian rights and an end to the occupation. Affiliation costs just £25 and you will receive campaign information, resources and can have a say in the direction of the organisation at the PSC AGM.  

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