June 2016

Safe Staffing
UNISON is hearing of quite a lot of concerns about staffing levels, in particular (but not exclusively) in community hospitals.  The Branch has decided to write out to all members about this, so this is by way of a reminder.  Please report if you have concerns, and also get in touch with the Branch.  There is a UNISON leaflet and form designed to help you with this, and is available here:
We can't take action if we don't know about what you're experiencing, so it's vital to make this formal (and required by professional codes of conduct, of course) so please let us know.
EU Referendum
On 23 June, the UK must make a decision. The referendum gives us all the chance to decide whether to remain part of the European Union (EU) or whether to leave.
It is an important decision for the UK and our future. UNISON knows the EU isn't perfect - far from it - but we have looked in detail at all the evidence from both sides and have come to the view that our members' interests are best served by remaining part of the European Union.
As your trade union, UNISON is here to protect your job, your standard of living, and the public services that we rely on every day. We believe that leaving the EU will make it harder for us to do that.
You will have received a statement from Dereck Rutter, our LGBT Officer on this, so we're not going to reproduce it here, but well done to Dereck for highlighting this for the Branch.  There will be a vigil marking the Orlando attack on Friday 17 June at 8.00 pm at Inverness Castle. 
Band 1 Review
This is progressing, and aiming for a target date of completion by October 2016.  By now, two Newsletters will have been issued by management, and some group consultation/information meetings for affected staff are being arranged.  If you have not received this information, or if you have any concerns, please get in touch and we will help you in whatever way we can.  The objective here is, if at all possible, to get everyone onto a suitable band 2 job, and ensuring that any training etc which may be required is put in place.  This is largely a UNISON-led initiative, and we think that it will provide a significant benefit to some of our lowest paid members.  If you work with other colleagues who are not members of UNISON, now may be the time to ask them to join!  We are already signing up new members as a consequence of this success for a significant group of staff.
Care at Home
The redesigns of service in South and Mid and North and West are progressing, but in different ways (and to different timescales).  We are pushing for more information and clarity for staff, particularly in South and Mid where there are some significant concerns for members.  We hope to be in a position to circulate more information on this next month (there is a key meeting taking place on 28 June).  We remain committed to protecting jobs within the in-house service (although as you may be aware, management are considering different options for some staff - which will be made clear to affected staff).  Watch this space - there will be further updates.
UNISON mental health survey
As part of its work on mental health, UNISON is undertaking a survey of its members who work in mental health settings. The survey will feed into UNISON's campaigning work on mental health. To complete the survey please go to: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/UNISONmentalhealth.  The survey will take five minutes to complete. Please do participate and share the survey link with your colleagues.
Sorry for the short notice - the survey is open until Friday 17 June - so fill it in now, it will only take a few minutes!
If there is anything you would like information about in future emails/newsletters, please get in touch.


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