Transgender Day of Remembrance – Tuesday 20 November – #TransAwarenessWeek

Announcement graphic reading: "TDoR - Transgender Day of Remembrance. RAISING THE TRANSGENDER FLAG, 1:45pm, Tuesday 20th November. Assemble under the flagpole next to the Council's Car Park." This announcement text overlaids a photograph of a raised transgender flag at the Civic Centre, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council.

This year Southend UNISONTranspire and Southend Borough Council will be raising the transgender flag to remember and honour transgender people around the world whose lives have been lost to anti-transgender violence.

We will be raising the transgender flag at 1:45pm on Tuesday 20th November. Please support by assembling under the flagpole next to the Council’s Car Park.

Also beforehand, visit the Southend UNISON stall in the SBC Civic Centre foyer from 12:00am for advise, support and a chat.

Everyone welcome, we look forward to seeing you there!

Image banner of Transgender Day of Remembrance.

Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR) is an annual observance on November 20th that honours the memory of those whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence.

TDOR was started by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honour the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. The vigil commemorated all the transgender people lost to violence that year and began an important memorial that has become the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance.

“The Transgender Day of Remembrance seeks to highlight the losses we face due to anti-transgender bigotry and violence. I am no stranger to the need to fight for our rights, and the right to simply exist is first and foremost. With so many seeking to erase transgender people — sometimes in the most brutal ways possible — it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice.”

Transgender Day of Remembrance founder Gwendolyn Ann Smith

Join THE LAST MILE CITIZENS’ LOBBY on Monday 5th November #thelastmile

Announcement graphic to join THE LAST MILE CITIZENS’ LOBBY on Monday 5th November 2018 – Meet at 10AM in Parliament Square.

UNISON members will be taking part in what’s been dubbed the ‘last mile citizens’ lobby’ at Westminster on 5th November, a third and final effort to speak up for the rights of EU citizens in the aftermath of the UK’s departure from Europe.

For more information read the news story and visit the event page.

If you’re a Southend UNISON member and would like to attend please contact the branch which will be covering travel expenses and subsistence.

Alternatively, an e-lobby is also available for people who cannot make the journey or take the day off.


For further information on this day of action contact Katia: k.widlak@unison.co.uk

You might also be interested to know that UNISON has launched a new web page on EU Citizens’ Rights, which provides organising information for UNISON’s EU members

To coincide with the launch, UNISON has also provided new guidance for branches and information for EU members on the government’s Settled Status proposals for EU citizens.

UNISON has an estimated 70,000 members who are EU nationals and the national executive council has made it a priority to support them.

STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference – Call for people to join the National Unity Demonstration on Saturday 17th November | #N17

Photograph showing a large group of STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference attendees holding National Unity Demonstration posters above their heads as a sign of support – the accompanying text reads: “National Unity Demonstration Saturday 17 November.”

The STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference in central London on Saturday 20th October brought together trade unionists, campaigners, parliamentarians, and faith and community leaders from across the UK, Europe and the US to help build a mass movement against the far right on our streets, in our workplaces, on our campuses and in our communities.

Around 1,400 people attended throughout the day – themes included combating racism, building solidarity with refugees, and defending migrants’ rights – with a resounding call for people to join the forthcoming National Unity Demonstration on Saturday 17th November.

If you’re a Southend UNISON member and would like to join the National Unity Demonstration on Saturday 17th November please contact the branch ASAP to book your coach seat.

If you know a non-UNISON member who would also like to attend this national demonstration please get them to contact us.

For more information please read this previous post and/or contact the Branch Office.


STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference in pictures.

Click here to view more pictures from the STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference and for more information about the proceedings download the Conference Agenda and read Tomáš Tengely-Evans’ article: Anti-racist conference meets in London and pledges to push the racist right back

Private Screening of PETERLOO at Southend Odeon – Thursday November 15th at 7.30pm

Announcement graphic reading: “PETERLOO: A FILM BY MIKE LEIGH – Private Screening, November 15th 2018, 7.30pm Southend Odeon. Labour Members & Supporters Only.” The announcement graphic also features the Southend West Labour Party logo and the Peterloo film poster dipicting the Peterloo Massacre when cavalry charged into a crowd of 60,000–80,000 people who had gathered to demand the reform of parliamentary representation.

Join Southend Labour at an exclusive private screening of Peterloo, the new film from legendary director Mike Leigh, on Thursday November 15th at 7.30pm at Southend Odeon.

For more details and to book your ticket visit the Southend Labour Facebook post.

Southend UNISON will be sponsoring a limited number of tickets for unwaged and low-waged members on a first-come, first-served basis – please contact the branch office ASAP if you need support.

Black History Month event at Southend Borough Council – Tuesday 23rd October, 12:30 – 2:00pm

Announcement graphic reading: “Join us for an event to celebrate Black British History. Speakers, stalls, refreshments, live jazz. Tuesday 23rd October, 12:30 – 2:00pm. Southend Borough Council, First Floor Foyer, Civic Centre, Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea SS2 6ER.” Black History 365, UNISON Southend-on-Sea and Southend Borough Council logos are displayed beneath.

Photographs showing guest speaker Josephine Melville (left) and Southend UNISON stall (right) at this year’s Black History Month event at Southend Borough Council.
Guest speaker Josephine Melville (left) and Southend UNISON stall (right) at this year’s Black History Month event at Southend Borough Council.

Photographs by Louise McDermott (President, Southend UNISON)

Photographs showing Sam Adams (LGBT+ Support Officer) and guest speaker Josephine Melville (left) and Pekance Tani (Social Worker, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council) and Pam Drever (Retired Members’ Officer) on Southend UNISON stall (right) at this year’s Black History Month event at Southend Borough Council.
Sam Adams (LGBT+ Support Officer) and guest speaker Josephine Melville (left) and Pekance Tani (Social Worker, SBC) and Pam Drever (Retired Members’ Officer) on Southend UNISON stall (right) at this year’s Black History Month event at Southend Borough Council.

Photographs by Kate Stafford (Local Organiser, UNISON Eastern)

Join us for an event to celebrate Black British History including speakers, refreshments, live jazz music and stalls from groups including UNISON Black Members.

WHERE: Southend Borough Council, First Floor Foyer, Civic Centre, Victoria Avenue, Southend-on-Sea SS2 6ER
WHEN: Tuesday 23rd October, 12:30 – 2:00pm


EVENT PROGRAMME

12:30 pm

Welcome by Niki Mistry
(Southend-on-Sea Borough Council BAME Forum Chair)

Speakers:

Emma Cooney
(Forum Sponsor and Director of Regeneration & Business Development)

Tim Roberts
(UNISON Eastern Region)

Ranjit Singh Rana
(Equality & Diversity Consultant)
Equalities: Progress on Equality Law and the Future

Mike Meehan
(Community Engagement Worker – Dementia)
The Impact of Dementia on Southend’s African/Caribbean Community

13:00 pm

Entertainment from jazz singer Dawnette Fessey – and a chance to chat and socialise!


EVERYONE WELCOME, WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU THERE!

Contact the branch to book your coach seat to join the National Unity Demonstration on Saturday 17th November

Announcement graphic reading: “National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism and Racism, Saturday 17 November, Assemble 12 noon, central London (details tbc).” Stand Up To Racism, TUC, Unite Against Fascism and Love Music Hate Racism logos are displayed vertically alongside.

If you’re a Southend UNISON member and would like to join the National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism & Racism on Saturday 17th November please contact the branch ASAP to book your coach seat.

We are experiencing the biggest rise in support for fascism, the far right, racism, Islamophobia and Antisemitism since the 1930s. In Britain fascists and racists are mobilising on a scale not seen for decades. We must unite against this threat.

If you know a non-UNISON member who would also like to attend this national demonstration please get them to contact us.

Dependent on numbers, we hope to be able to provide transportation (for a nominal fee) – this would be dependent on sufficient numbers for a coach booking.

If we do not have enough numbers for a coach we would be looking to support UNISON members from the Southend-on-Sea Local Government branch by covering/contributing towards return train tickets.

The demonstration has been initiated by Stand Up To Racism, officially backed by the TUC, co-sponsored by Unite Against Fascism and Love Music Hate Racism and supported by Diane Abbott MP and John McDonnell MP alongside a whole host of trade union leaders, politicians and cultural figures.

For more information please visit the National Unity Demonstration Facebook page and/or contact the Branch Office.

All the best,

Claire Wormald
Branch Secretary

Graphic depicting numerous demonstrators in shocking pink silhouette on a yellow background.

Call for Southend UNISON members to attend the STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference in London on Saturday 20 October

Announcement graphic reading: “International Conference: How Do We Defeat The Rise Of Fascism & Racism? Saturday 20 October, Friends Meeting House, London NW1 2BJ. Speakers include: Diane Abbott MP, John McDonnell MP plus parliamentarians, faith and community leaders, and campaigners from across Europe and the US.

If you’re a Southend UNISON member and would like to attend the STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference: How Do We Defeat The Rise Of Fascism & Racism? in London on Saturday 20 October please contact the branch ASAP for financial support.

We will be covering conference registration, travel expenses and subsistence for 6 delegates on a first-come, first-served basis. In exchange, we would want your feedback and support on how we can best organise around issues raised at the conference and how we can be proactive in challenging racism, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia in our workplace and community.

The STAND UP TO RACISM International Conference will bring together trade unionists, campaigners, parliamentarians, and faith and community leaders from across the UK, Europe and the US to help build a mass movement against the far right on our streets, in our workplaces, on our campuses and in our communities – with a focused on mobilising for the forthcoming National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism & Racism* on Saturday 17 November.

For more information about the conference please visit here and if you wish to attend please contact the branch office ASAP.

* More information about the National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism & Racism coming soon.

Black History Month, UNISON’s Eastern Region Black Members’ Group and Black Members’ Conference

UNISON’s Eastern Region Black Members’ Group

Dear Members,

Black History Month during October is a time to celebrate achievements of Black people throughout history. Black History, and Black British History in particular, is often marginalised.

Black History Month is a key time to acknowledge achievements and provides an opportunity to discuss wider issues affecting the Black community.

This year on Tuesday 23rd of October Southend UNISON will be putting together a Black History event with Southend Borough Council.

More details to follow soon…


UNISON’s Eastern Region Black Members’ Group campaigns for equality in the workplace and the wider community and meets 4 times a year.

All workers may face problems relating to pay, terms and conditions, restructures, disciplinaries etc. However Black members are also at risk of experiencing another layer of problems relating to racism and discrimination.

The group considers how more Black workers can be recruited into UNISON and how more Black UNISON members can become active in their union. We also look at what the union can do to tackle the causes and effects of discrimination. The meetings are relaxed but informative and well attended.

Southend UNISON members can contact the Branch Office and Gloria Lawton (Junior Vice President, Southend UNISON) about becoming a branch delegate and to discuss any issues that might arise in their workplace or contact Winston Dorsett (Regional Organiser, Eastern Region Black Members’ Group) for more information about getting involved with the Eastern Region Black Members’ Group.

Eastern Region Black Members’ Group contact:
Winston Dorsett | W.Dorsett@unison.co.uk
Church Lane House, Church Lane, Chelmsford, Essex CM1 1NH
Telephone: 01245 608 913


There is also the annual Black Members’ Conference in January. This is the largest gathering of Black trade union members in Europe and is always an informative and uplifting event. For more information about attending please read this post.

Kind regards,

Gloria Lawton
Junior Vice President

Join the SHOULDER TO SHOULDER – Women’s Pensions Rally in London – Wednesday 10th October – #shouldertoshoulder #onevoice

Announcement graphic reading: "SHOULDER TO SHOULDER Women's Pensions Rally London – Wednesday 10th October." Also displayed are WASPI (Women Against State Pension Inequality), BackTo60, 'We Paid In, You Pay Out' and Southend UNISON logos.

Dear Members,

WASPI, BackTo60, ‘We Paid In, You Pay Out’ and other women’s pension groups will join together ‘SHOULDER TO SHOULDER’ on 10th October in London in a joint endeavour to secure back their earned dues.

When / Where
Wednesday 10th October / London
12:00 – 3:00pm at Reformer’s Tree, Hyde Park
3.30 – 6:00pm at Parliament Square

Everyone affected by the unacceptable changes in the pension provision for women are invited to attend.

Confirmed speakers at the rally are key figures in the political and legal dispute, including David Hencke, Yvette Greenway, Sam Smethers, Helen Shay and Frances Barber.

If you’re a Southend UNISON member and need support with costs to attend this important event contact the branch office ASAP.

For more information download (and share) the SHOULDER TO SHOULDER press release and event programme, and read the BackTo60 post.

All the best,

Claire Wormald
Branch Secretary

Bi Visibility Day 2018 #BiVisibilityDay

Photograph of Michael Sargood (OUTreach member) and Sam Adams (UNISON LGBT+ Support Officer) on the UNISON Bi Visibility Day stall at Southend-on-Sea Borough Council.
Michael Sargood (OUTreach member) and Sam Adams (UNISON LGBT+ Support Officer) on the UNISON Bi Visibility Day stall at Southend-on-Sea Borough Council.

On Friday 21st September Southend UNISON LGBT+ Group and OUTreach (Southend-on-Sea Borough Council’s forum for LGBT+ staff and allies) were celebrating and raising awareness for Bi Visibility Day.

Today Sunday, 23rd September, is Bi Visibility Day – George Alabaster, Stonewall’s Digital Officer and co-chair of its Bi Staff Network, talks about the challenges the bi community face and how we can all play a role in addressing biphobia. To read the article visit the Stonewall post.