Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Vote YES in UNISON's Political Fund Ballot 1st-30th November

UNISON is calling on all our members to vote YES in the Political Fund ballot which opens on 1 November and closes on 30 November.

Kate Ramsden, Branch Chair, said, "UNISON has a tradition of successful political campaigning both at national and at local level.

"The law says that unions must have a specific political fund to pay for such work and that a ballot has to be held every 10 years for it to continue.

"Many of our members don't appreciate that UNISON is unique in having two parts to its political fund.  You can choose whether you want your political fund payment (which is a small part of your normal subs rate and does not cost you anything extra) to go into the General Political Fund (GPF), the Affiliated Political Fund (APF) - which funds the Labour Party - or not to pay into the fund at all.

"All this ballot is asking is for members to confirm these arrangements, which have been in operation since the formation of UNISON."

Branch Secretary, Inez Teece added, "UNISON's National Executive Council is recommending a yes vote to keep a strong political voice for the union at European, national and local levels. Our political fund is what allows us to take campaigns into the political arena."

The ballot papers and materials will be mailed out with U magazine in late October. For more information or if you have not received your ballot paper by 10 November please call 0800 0 857 857.

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Thousands demand a just Scotland

Aberdeenshire UNISON members joined thousands of trade unionists and anti-poverty campaigners in Glasgow on Saturday 18th October to demand a just Scotland with decent work and decent pay, and an end to austerity, child poverty and foodbanks.

The branch banner joined hundreds of others as the march made its way from Glasgow Green to George Square. At the same time tens of thousands marched in London and in Belfast to make the same demands and to call for decent wages and an end to the low wage economy created by this Condem Government.

In Glasgow, the assembled marchers heard from a range of speakers calling for an end to attacks on the poorest and most vulnerable in our country whilst the richest continue to amass huge wealth which could clear the deficit many times over.

Suspension of Industrial Action 21 October 2014 - new consultative ballot

Following a meeting of UNISON’s Scottish Local Government Committee on Tuesday 14th October, the committee has taken the decision to suspend strike action planned for 21 October and consult our members on new proposals put forward by the Scottish Employers (CoSLA).

The proposals concentrate on three areas of our dispute: the future participation in the agreed bargaining machinery; consolidation of the living wage; and the deletion of spinal column point below the level of the living wage.

The view of the Scottish Local Government Committee is that these proposals represent a significant change to the current award. In line with our agreed procedures UNISON is consulting members on the revised pay offer from the employers and a full consultative ballot will now take place.

Kate Ramsden, Branch Chair said, "The branch's view is that to get the employers back round the table represents a significant achievement on the part of our negotiators and we are delighted that our low paid members will benefit from the consolidation of the living wage.

"We recognise that for our members, 1% is still a pay cut of around 16% but at least we can now engage with the employers within the proper bargaining machinery next year and we will certainly be campaigning for a better pay rise for us all."

The ballot will open on Monday 20 October 2014 and close on Monday 3 November 2014.

Click here to see full statement from the Local Government Committee

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Action plans put to industrial action committee

Following the ballot vote for action, UNISON Scottish local government leaders have sought authority from the union's industrial action committee for a programme of industrial action over the coming months.

This will include a day of action followed by a programme of geographical/selective action. Branch consultation will kick off next week.

UNISON negotiator and Branch Secretary, Inez Teece said: "Members are angry about the way they have been treated. Their pay being eroded whilst theytake the brunt of the cuts. We urge employers to come back to the negotiating table."

Click here to check for updates.