Unions are the solution for the economy and equality
General secretary Christina McAnea and UNISON members appeared at a special event in Westminster that examined how both the economy and gender equality can be boosted through investment in the social care sector. ‘Time to Care’ looked at the key components that make up the economic case for social care investment and reform – and why social care should be as important to our economic infrastructure as the roads and railways. For example, more people work in social care than for the NHS – a huge workforce who spend their wages in local economies. Local job creation also reduces the need for traveling, making funding for care jobs also a green investment. And, crucially, a properly funded social care system is vital to women: not only do they make up the majority of the care workforce, but women also take on the bulk of unpaid caring responsibilities, which reduces their ability to participate in paid employment. As the UK seeks to recover from COVID-19 and deal with the worst cost of living crisis in a generation, there is a pressing need for investment to be prioritised for those industries that have been particularly badly affected by the pandemic and those that can bring a boost to our flagging economy. Social care ticks both of these boxes.
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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org and we will forward it on to our colleagues in Turkey.
Palestine WebinarSolidarity 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.
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.
International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT) is an important day to recognise, as sadly not every country around the world has the same rights. Equally, there are individuals that seek to undermine these progressive rights in Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom. We cannot let this happen!
We’re getting “back to normal” but WE MUST STAY ON GUARD It’s July 19th and the Covid rules have been relaxed in Scotland. Health experts are warning that it may be some time (if ever) before we can say that the Pandemic is over. In the meantime, you must stay alert to the virus and follow the guidelines below ….