UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.
Saturday, 29 January 2011
The consensus across unions attending yesterday's TUC summit on co-ordinating action against Government austerity cuts is that it was a productive session which mapped out a clear line of advance on both anti cuts campaigning and the defence of public sector pensions.
George Soros, the internationally renowned investor, has warned David Cameron that his policies would push the British economy back into recession unless it changed their hardline austerity package. Speaking in Davos, the man who famously wrecked the economic reputation of the last Conservative administration on Black Wednesday said the mix of tax increases and spending cuts would lead to recession.
Friday, 28 January 2011
Amnesty International has condemned the findings of an Israeli inquiry into last year’s raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla as a “whitewash” which failed to account for the deaths of nine Turkish nationals.
According to press reports the TUC is today convening a meeting of union leader's purportedly to discuss 'co-ordinated industrial action' against government spending cuts: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-12304080
When a 3 per cent increase in members’ pension contributions to public sector schemes was announced in the Comprehensive Spending Review, few people will have recognised the wide-ranging consequences. Even now the message is muted nevertheless, by the end of this Parliament the biggest pension scheme in the UK could be in tatters.
Thursday, 27 January 2011
|Click here for Danny Glover and |
TransAfrica Forum Report
Private sector pensions could also be indexed to CPI. In July 2010 the Government announced that from April 2011, private sector Occupational Pension schemes, the Pension Protection Fund and the Financial Assistance Scheme could use CPI to calculate increases in payments to pensioners and for revaluations of deferred entitlement.
Current and future pensioners are being hammered by the ConDem’s austerity programme by a simple act of changing the inflation assumption that is used to increase our pensions every year.
Wednesday, 26 January 2011
Just as the first College of Social Work in England gets off the ground BASW (British Association of Social Workers) decide to withdraw and declare their own college. ....What’s going on?
The Development and Organisation Committee of UNISON's NEC met in London today. It received a 2010 year end membership report following DOCAS line counts of working members in all regions. Last year UNISON had the best recruitment performance for 10 years and grew by 19,000 members (1.45%).
Mervyn King Governor of the Bank of England (and VIP guest speaker at 2010 TUC Congress) last night forecast that that real wages in 2011 will be lower than 2005 levels – the worst period of wage stagnation for 80 years:
An inspirational speech against library closures by author Philip Pullman over on False Economy. http://falseeconomy.org.uk/blog/save-oxfordshire-libraries-speech-philip-pullman
Tuesday, 25 January 2011
An editorial in the current BMJ pulls no puinches on the topic of NHS Reform. "What do you call a government that embarks on the biggest upheaval of the NHS in its 63 year history, at breakneck speed, while simultaneously trying to make unprecedented financial savings? The politically correct answer has got to be: mad." http://www.bmj.com/content/342/bmj.d408.long
Today's YouGov/Sun voting intentions are CON 37%, LAB 42%, LDEM 11%. Still bang in line with the five point Labour lead YouGov have been showing of late. The 11% for the Liberal Democrats is, incidentally, the highest YouGov have shown them at since early December but a recent poll also shows that a third of LibDem votes would now vote Labour.
Monday, 24 January 2011
On Saturday Sir John Vickers, chairman of the ICB, yesterday gave the clearest sign yet that the commission could recommend to the Government a fundamental reform of the UK's high-street banks, including the option of splitting their retail and investment banking divisions.
More people oppose the Government’s plans to restructure the NHS than support them, and faith in the Coalition’s ability to deliver NHS services is fairly low, says a new YouGov Poll http://today.yougov.co.uk/politics/national-health
Sunday, 23 January 2011
The New York Times reports that union membership in the US fell sharply last year to the lowest level since the 1930's. Membership stands at 14.7m - a density across the economy of only 11.9% and this low average betrays wide industrial and regional disparities with private sector density now down to 6.9% and in many southern states union membership has fallen to sub-critical levels for example North Carolina at 3.2% and Georgia at 4% http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/22/business/22union.html?_r=2