General Secretary Election – Southend nominates Paul Holmes

General Secretary Election – Southend nominates Paul Holmes

  • Southend branch has nominated Paul Holmes for General Secretary because we know he wants change.
  • Unison nationally is not delivering for members. Branches currently only get 25% of our subs and no say over national and regional resources. Paul wants half of Unison resources directed to us and our members. 
  • The Government is coming at us with more attacks. Paul has the best track-record of leadership in fighting for members and winning – on pay, jobs, safety, racism and discrimination .
  • Paul is the grassroots candidate and will take the job on his current wage of £32,000, not the £138,000 salary advertised.

    Photo of Paul Holmes
    Paul Holmes

Schools Return – Latest Advice

Dear Members,

With some schools open already and the rest set to follow in the next couple of weeks, here is the latest information from UNISON about safety in schools and early years.

We’ve got an update on face coverings, a reminder about our dedicated guidance page, and important new advice for staff who have serious concerns that returning to the workplace will endanger their health.

Face coverings

The government has been forced to change its guidance on face coverings after weeks of pressure from UNISON and other unions (as well as high-profile scientist Professor Alice Roberts referencing our advice).

From 1 September, head teachers in secondary schools in England will have the “discretion” to introduce face coverings in their schools.

Additionally, in areas of local lockdown, staff and pupils in secondary schools will be required to wear face coverings in corridors and communal spaces. (The same exemptions for those unable to wear face coverings will apply.)

UNISON’s position remains that staff should be allowed to wear face coverings in any educational setting, if you choose to. We continue to pressure the government to issue clearer guidance and we will keep our FAQ on face coverings updated.

New government guidance

Our comment

Get Help with School Uniforms

Get Help with your Scchool Uniforms

help with school uniformsAs many people struggle through the pandemic, the extra cost of sending the children back to school now looms on the horizon.

But UNISON is here to help. There For You, our welfare charity, has launched its School Uniform Grant, offering a one-off £50 per school age child, up to a cost of £150, to help cover the cost of uniforms.

To be eligible, you must meet the following:

  • You are a member and have paid 4 weeks subscriptions before 3 August (the launch date of this programme);
  • You are financially responsible for the child/children and receiving Child Benefit for them;
  • You have total combined (yourself and your partner if applicable) savings/rolling bank balance(s) of less than £1,000, and;
    • Either you receive Housing Benefit or Universal Credit
    • Or you have an annual net salary of less than £18,000 (combined salary with partner must be less than £18,000 p.a. if applicable).

If you qualify, head over to UNISON’s national page to read more small print and apply.

School Uniform Grant

There For You offers the School Uniform Grant every year to help out low-paid public servants. Here’s what a few of the recipients of last year’s grant had to say.

“A big thank you for your help in ensuring my daughter had the best possible start to her new high school, without this support I would have struggled.”

“Thank you so much for the uniform grant it has been a life saver. I was able to buy two new cardigans which she was desperate for! Two ties and the school’s official bag which she has always wanted.”

“Thank you so much for helping us as a family with the school uniform grant. It really took the worry out of shopping. (I’ve cried in Clarks before at the price!)”

“Thank you for supporting me with their uniform costs and enabling me to send them off looking so smart, I’m a very, very proud single mum today.”

As many people struggle through the pandemic, the extra cost of sending the children back to school now looms on the horizon.

But UNISON is here to help. There For You, our welfare charity, has launched its School Uniform Grant, offering a one-off £50 per school age child, up to a cost of £150, to help cover the cost of uniforms.

To be eligible, you must meet the following:

  • You are a member and have paid 4 weeks subscriptions before 3 August (the launch date of this programme);
  • You are financially responsible for the child/children and receiving Child Benefit for them;
  • You have total combined (yourself and your partner if applicable) savings/rolling bank balance(s) of less than £1,000, and;
    • Either you receive Housing Benefit or Universal Credit
    • Or you have an annual net salary of less than £18,000 (combined salary with partner must be less than £18,000 p.a. if applicable).

If you qualify, head over to UNISON’s national page to read more small print and apply.

School Uniform Grant

There For You offers the School Uniform Grant every year to help out low-paid public servants. Here’s what a few of the recipients of last year’s grant had to say.

“A big thank you for your help in ensuring my daughter had the best possible start to her new high school, without this support I would have struggled.”

“Thank you so much for the uniform grant it has been a life saver. I was able to buy two new cardigans which she was desperate for! Two ties and the school’s official bag which she has always wanted.”

“Thank you so much for helping us as a family with the school uniform grant. It really took the worry out of shopping. (I’ve cried in Clarks before at the price!)”

“Thank you for supporting me with their uniform costs and enabling me to send them off looking so smart, I’m a very, very proud single mum today.”

As many people struggle through the pandemic, the extra cost of sending the children back to school now looms on the horizon.

But UNISON is here to help. There For You, our welfare charity, has launched its School Uniform Grant, offering a one-off £50 per school age child, up to a cost of £150, to help cover the cost of uniforms.

To be eligible, you must meet the following:

  • You are a member and have paid 4 weeks subscriptions before 3 August (the launch date of this programme);
  • You are financially responsible for the child/children and receiving Child Benefit for them;
  • You have total combined (yourself and your partner if applicable) savings/rolling bank balance(s) of less than £1,000, and;
    • Either you receive Housing Benefit or Universal Credit
    • Or you have an annual net salary of less than £18,000 (combined salary with partner must be less than £18,000 p.a. if applicable).

If you qualify, head over to UNISON’s national page to read more small print and apply.

School Uniform Grant

There For You offers the School Uniform Grant every year to help out low-paid public servants. Here’s what a few of the recipients of last year’s grant had to say.

“A big thank you for your help in ensuring my daughter had the best possible start to her new high school, without this support I would have struggled.”

“Thank you so much for the uniform grant it has been a life saver. I was able to buy two new cardigans which she was desperate for! Two ties and the school’s official bag which she has always wanted.”

“Thank you so much for helping us as a family with the school uniform grant. It really took the worry out of shopping. (I’ve cried in Clarks before at the price!)”

“Thank you for supporting me with their uniform costs and enabling me to send them off looking so smart, I’m a very, very proud single mum today.”

Apply today

8th August – Essex March for Fair NHS Pay

Saturday 8th August, March for Fair Pay for NHS Workers-

March organised by local NHS nurses and other staff to protest at being left out of pay rises for some other areas of the public sector (like doctors and police). Part of a national day of demonstrations. Meet 11am at Basildon Hospital for a short socially-distanced march to a town centre rally. #NHSWorkersSayNo
#NHSPay15

8th August NHS March Flyer

UNISON’s response to government spending statement

Money for public services would mean a quicker recovery

UNISON’s General Secretary Dave Prentis issued his response to Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Covid-19 spending statement. See the full response here.

Picture of twenty pound note“Proper investment in our public services would help speed the country back to recovery and more prosperous, certain times. It would heal over the deep cracks in care and the NHS exposed by the pandemic.

“With extra funds, national and local public services could provide many more jobs. A much-deserved early pay rise for health workers and council staff would mean money in their pockets to be spent on local high streets.

Solidarity with Tower Hamlets UNISON Strikers

Tower Hamlets Council Workers Strike against attack on Terms and Conditions 3rd, 6th and 7th July

Tower Hamlets Strike PosterOn 3rd, 6th & 7th July, workers for the London Borough of Tower Hamlets will be striking against the imposition of “Tower Rewards”. Their council is seeking to sack 4,000 council workers and remploy them on a new contract with much worse conditions. This is the thanks essential public service workers get during a pandemic! Our colleagues in Tower Hamlets UNISON branch  have published the details on Facebook here.

Show Solidarity – Join the Virtual Picket Line

Tower Hamlets UNISON are holding  online rallies / virtual picket lines at 11.30am on each strike day. We urge Southend members to join the ‘virtual’ pickets and show our solidarity with our colleagues – we all face the same attacks!    You can ‘book’ your place the pickets on Eventbrite here. 

 

Have Your Say On Pay!

Council and Schools Pay Deal – Make up your mind on ‘final offer’

The national employers in local government have made what they say is their ‘final offer’ on the 2020 pay deal. If you work in the council or schools (or other groups who get the ‘NJC’ pay rise), UNISON is arranging for all members to take part in a ballot on this offer. Southend branch will soon be sending out information about how you can vote.

Find out about the employers’ offer – make up your mind whether or not to accept it: You can find information about the ‘offer’ on the national UNISON website here.

2020 pay photos

Have we got your contact details?

If you want to have your say, we need to make sure we have up to date contact details for you. You can update your details online at My Unison

Peoples Assembly Online Rally 7th May

The Fight for our lives

Mass online rally from 6:30pm Thursday 7th May organised by the People’s assembly:

The Government’s mishandling of the coronavirus crisis has cost thousands of lives. The People’s Assembly will be hosting a huge online platform for campaigns to voice their demands to meet this emergency and for a better life after the crisis.
We will be broadcasting across a large number of social media platforms so there is the potential for an audience of thousands, a social media takeover.

Watch live from the People’s Assembly Facebook Page on Thursday from 6:30pm:
https://www.facebook.com/ThePeoplesAssembly/

Peoples Assembly rally lineup

Here are a few things you can do to help us make this as big as possible:

1. Share the event:

https://www.facebook.com/events/234254484316736/

Use your 500 invites on Facebook. Don’t be shy!

2. Post on social media:

Here is some sample copy you might want to use:

Join the Fight for our Lives rally on Thursday 6.30pm. More than 50 organisations representing millions of people are coming together to take over social media platforms by streaming an online rally to demand universal testing, tracking, PPE and no return to austerity.  Key Workers, so crucial to our society deserve a pay rise, better conditions and recognition for their contribution. We will not be made to pay for this health crisis that has been so badly managed by this Government.

3. Use the graphics in this email. You can find them here on our resource page.

4. Let’s get trending on social media during the online Rally using #HealthBeforeWealth