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

Saturday, 2 June 2012

Money Supply Reform - Child's Play

Money supply reform, the contention that governments, not banks, should create and lend a nation’s money—has rarely even made the news, except on UNISONActive - so this is a first. Victoria, a 12 year old Canadian, managed to frame the message in a way that was so simple and clear that even a child could understand it.

We by Dave Puller

We've been ruled We've been fooled We've been preached at We've been screeched at We've been drilled We've been killed

We've been stacked We've been sacked We've been tricked We've been kicked We've been whipped We've been shipped

We've been patronised We've been criminalised We've been socialised We've been demonised We've been bowed We've been cowed

We've been taught to crawl We've been taught to brawl We've been taught to swim We've been taught to run We've been working class What utter fun.


Friday, 1 June 2012

SEIU – a united force for change

This week the 2.1m strong Service Employees International Union (SEIU) held its 2012 Convention in Denver. In a Tour de Force speech, the first SEIU woman leader Mary Kay Henry addresses convention delegates on the challenges facing the US labour movement in the critical year ahead:

Thursday, 31 May 2012

UNISON Local Government SGE agrees extensive member consultation on new LGPS

The Local Government Service Group Executive (SGE) met today and considered two motions concerned with the process for consulting members over the new LGPS proposals:
http://www.unison.org.uk/asppresspack/pressrelease_view.asp?id=2713 Bearing in mind the LGPS includes members in five different Service Groups, and the union has already decided the ultimate decision will rest with an individual member ballot, the first motion, following, sets out a methodical and comprehensive engagement of members, branches and Regions:

LGPS proposals published - no contribution increases for vast majority of scheme members

The Local Government Association (LGA) and trade unions have today announced the outcome of their negotiations on new LGPS proposals (for England and Wales) to take effect from 1st April 2014. These proposals will now be communicated to scheme members, employers, funds and other scheme interests.
Unions will consult their members over these proposals and the LGA will consult employers. Government has confirmed that a favourable outcome of our consultations will enable them to move directly to a statutory consultation later in the Autumn to implement these proposals.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

The ‘catastrophic effect’ of Con Dem austerity on child poverty

Unicef is warning that austerity measures are reversing recent progress in tackling child poverty in the UK - which has a higher proportion of children in poverty (12%) than 21 of 35 economically advanced countries in the Unicef survey.
 "We know that the number of children living in poverty in the UK is set to increase due to spending cuts. This will be a catastrophic blow to the futures of thousands of children, putting at risk their future health, education and chances of employment. said David Bull, the executive director of Unicef UK.
The report is a damning indictment of the Coalition Government by the universally respected United Nations agency promoting children’s rights:

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Greek bail-out terms - 'ultimate form of neoliberal flexibility'

A crisis of illegality is engulfing the European Union writes Professor Keith Ewing in today's Morning Star. The draconian terms imposed by the so called troika of the ECB, European Commission and IMF - which are stripping away workers' rights and the principle of equality - are in conflict with the basic legal principles upon which the European Union and its institutions are built:

Monday, 28 May 2012

Con Dem plans to replace NHS Direct in total disarray

Back in March UNISON warned about the fragmentation of NHS Direct and stated 'real concerns over the loss of expertise and the inability of the new 111 to provide national resilience'. The union's warning has been vindicated with a report in today's FT that private contractors (including Capita, Care UK and Serco) are boycotting the tender process because 'the plans are unworkable'. The BMA has condemned developments saying 'a potentially dangerous version of NHS 111 is set to burst forth upon an unsuspecting public from April':

Leading Irish unions call for 'NO' vote in EU treaty referendum

Back in March 2012, the European TUC denounced the EU Fiscal Compact as ‘leading to permanent austerity’ and stated its unequivocal opposition to the Treaty signed by 25 EU countries: www.etuc.org/a/9762
 Three major Irish unions, Unite, Mandate and the Civil Public and Service Union (CPSU) - which have a combined membership of 100,000 - are refusing to acquiesce to pressure from the corporate and political elite and in a principled trade union stand against austerity are calling on working people to vote NO in Ireland’s referendum on the Treaty being held this Thursday:

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Organising for the Living Wage

The UNISON Living Wage victory at St George's hospital in London puts the focus on how branches can make a real difference for workers at local level. Cleaners at the Medical School will get a new London Living Wage of £8.30 an hour. It comes on the back of another victory for the branch in 2008 (see pic) when they won up to £75 a week for cleaners employed by ISS.

The Answer by Olga Bergholz

But I tell you that there are not
The years, that I for empty hold,
The ways, without a goal set,
The messages that nothing had.
There’re not the worlds, I ever lost,
The gifts, I gave without good thoughts,
There’s not a love that’s a mistake,
That is deceived, that’s a heart’s ache –
Its everlasting clear light
All over glows in my heart.
And it is never late once more
To start all life in the new world –
Such, that in toilsome days of yore,
To cross not any moan or word.