Welcome to Birmingham University UNISON

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Latest Branch News

Branch Evening Social on 6th May 2016

To mark International Workers' Day, we have organised a free evening branch social, which is open to everybody. The social will take place on Friday, 6th May 2016 from 7pm - 10pm at the Birmingham LGBT Centre (38-40 Hollow Circus, B1 1EQ).

There will be comedy, comment and campaigns, with speakers including writer and performer Naomi Paul (fresh from her Edinburgh Fringe success), Dudley-born author Anthony Cartwright (previous novels include 'How I killed Margaret Thatcher' and 'Heartland'), and speakers from Friends of the Library of Birmingham, Junior Doctors and the NUT. Drinks and food will also be provided.

There is no need to book and we look forward to seeing you there!


Consultative redundancy ballot - deadline extended to 23rd May 2016

Many of you will be aware that we have recently started balloting members to defend our jobs and stand up against compulsory redundancies. If you have not yet received your ballot paper, don't worry as these are still being sent out and due to delays in getting all the ballot papers sent out, the deadline for the ballot has been moved to 23rd May.

When you have received your ballot paper, please vote YES to defending our jobs and our livelihoods.


Upcoming training courses!

The following UNISON training courses are starting soon and are free for any branch member to attend:

Click on any of the above courses for more information and to download the application form. If you want to attend a course, the union can help you get time off for these if you would normally be in work. Please contact our Education Officer, Marian Jordan for more information.

You can also apply for the above courses, and browse more courses, at www.learninunisonwm.org.uk

Fight the Trade Union bill

The Tory's anti-trade union bill means:

  1. At least 50% of staff have to vote in any industrial action ballot - most MPs would be ruled out by this if the same rule was applied to parliament and hypocritically the government won't allow online voting
  2. Employers can use agency staff to break strikes
  3. Unions will have to give 2 weeks notice instead of 1 week of any strike action taking place

To support us in fighting this bill, you can:

Sign the national TUC petition - it only takes 1 minute!

Write to your MP asking them to drop the Trade Union bill

Remember what trade unions have done for us

  • Paid annual leave
  • 8 hour working day
  • Sick pay
  • Contracts of employment and a pay slip
  • Maternity and paternity paid leave
  • Abolition of Child Labour
  • Retirement ages and old age pension
  • National minimum wage and now fighting for the Real Living Wage
  • Equality legislation
  • Health and Safety inspections and keeping the workplace safe
  • Collective bargaining

Don't let us go back to Victorian times  - defend your trade unions!


Our December newsletter is out

Look out for our latest newsletter in the internal post. It includes a tongue-in-cheek Christmas card which you can send to the Vice-Chancellor as part of our 2016 pay campaign, to let him know how important getting a decent wage is to having a warm and worry-free Christmas!

If you have not received the newsletter or would like extra copies for colleagues, please contact Lee Crutchley.

You can also download the newsletter (without the Christmas card) here.

Community Leaders Speak Out For The Living Wage! event

We held a Living Wage event on 2nd November 2015 to launch our renewed campaign for the University to become an accredited Living Wage employer. Speakers included Steve McCabe (MP for Selly Oak), Stuart Stacey and Karen McCarthy   (Birmingham City Councillors), Carl Chinn (Historian and academic staff member at UoB), and Lianne Brooks (Unison Higher Education Officer for West Midlands). All speakers spoke passionately about the importance of an employer as big and prestigious as the University to value its staff by paying a fair wage.

You can read the Birmingham Mail article on the event here.
Some photos from the event are below and you can also view a short clip of Carl Chinn giving a passionate speech in which he challenges the VC to meet publicly with UCU and Unison representatives to debate the importance of a Living Wage.

Living Wage event attendees with posters

Carl Chinn at the Living Wage event