UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Involving workers key to quality services – not privatisation

Edinburgh Council would do well to learn the lessons of a story in its own staff magazine and vote against two more major privatisations this month.

Yoke and Star by Jose Marti

When I was born, without the sun, my mother said:
Flower of my heart, generous Homagno
Me and the world's great copy,
Fish and poultry in horse and man becomes
Look at these two, which gives you pain,
Insignias of life go and choose.
This is a yoke whoever accepts it, enjoy:
Makes gentle ox, and provides
Service to the gentlemen, sleeping on straw

Friday, 6 January 2012

Social Care ‘backbone’ paid less than minimum wage

200,000 direct care workers, “the backbone of the social care workforce” are being paid less than the minimum wage according to research by King’s College London, which UNISON helped with. http://www.kcl.ac.uk/sspp/kpi/scwru/pubs/periodical/issues/scwp16.pdf

Ultra Orthodox extremists violate memory of Holocaust victims

Ultra Orthodox Jews demonstrated in Jerusalem wearing the 'uniforms' of Concentration Camps victims and displaying yellow stars based on the ones the Nazis forced on all Jews in the 1930's and 40's. They were demonstrating against the opposition to their attempts to bully and abuse those in Israeli society who don't share their religious convictions. This abuse included spitting at and assaulting school children who were attending mixed sex schools or exposing arms and legs. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/menachem-rosensaft/those-who-desecrate-the-h_b_1180670.html?ref=daily-brief?utm_source=DailyBrief&utm_campaign=010312&utm_medium=email&utm_content=BlogEntry&utm_term=Daily%20Brief

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Glasgow commemorates 40th anniversary of UCS occupation

Trade unionists and the wider community are set to mark the 40th anniversary of one of the greatest moments in Scottish Working Class History – the Clyde Ship Yard Workers occupation to save their Ship Yard. A successful occupation that was characterised by the leadership of Jimmy Reid (‘there will be discipline and no bevying’) the workers took over the yard to stop its closure. http://www.scotsman.com/news/chris_bartter_anniversary_of_work_in_is_a_timely_inspiration_1_2035032

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Dobson 15 years, Norris 14 years

UNISON has supported the Lawrence family campaign for Justice for Stephen Lawrence from its inception, through previous trial disasters, and through the MacPherson inquiry. The conviction and imprisonment of Dobson and Norris today for Stephen’s murder is only a partial victory. They have admitted nothing, and shown no contrition or understanding of what the acts that they have committed.

Never give in when your cause is just - RIP Stephen Lawrence (1974–1993)

Rodney Bickerstaffe gives his personal view on the verdict in the Stephen Lawrence murder trial.
Justice delayed is justice denied. So goes the old saying. And so it has been for the family, friends and supporters of Stephen Lawrence's cause. And so it's been for the community of Eltham, in South London. And further afield, so has it seemed to the scores of thousands in no way related to the young victim, but touched and angered by his murder and by its unhappy and unsettling aftermath.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Make 2012 the year to tackle poverty

The excellent piece on UNISONActive (Review of 2011) rightly provided an analysis of the challenges that we face as an organising union. For 2012 the overwhelming issue has to be tackling the poverty that is creeping and blighting the lives of our members and our communities throughout the UK. It is children in particular who suffer the consequences: http://www.jrf.org.uk/sites/files/

Monday, 2 January 2012

10 years of campaigning for a living wage

The Living Wage campaign has yielded £96m in topped-up wages for thousands of workers over the past 10 years, according to a study by Queen Mary College, University of London: http://www.independent

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Happy New Year from the Cuban 5

Dear friends:
I wish to convey to all of you my most sincere appreciation for another year in solidarity with this struggle for truth and justice.

The year which will soon end is yet another year of significant efforts of  all those, who in one way or another, contribute to the objective of making the freedom of  the Cuban Five a reality.

to being with by kari edwards

You made a significant . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . bigstep
forward . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
compared to . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . that one step
before dropping to . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . . . . . . the next .......