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Friday, 22 January 2016

The silent slaughter of council services. Full text of joint union submission

This is the full text of the submission by Tom Connolly, Staff Side Secretary, to the City of Edinburgh Council Budget Meeting on 21 January 2016

As we face yet another year of cuts, the trade unions have grave concerns about the impact that these cuts will have on Service provision and on our members Terms and Conditions.

These continuous cuts will have a negative impact on the public of Edinburgh who rely on council services, in particular the poorest and most deprived, the most vulnerable children, young people and families, the elderly, the disabled and all who reside in the areas of greatest deprivation in our city.

Through the current Transformation programme we are told time and time again that we need to become more lean and agile. What this means in practice is; work harder with less. Our members have and always will work hard to deliver the vital services they provide to the public. However, staff are reaching breaking point and are finding themselves overstretched and unable to access the resources that they need to carry out their work safely. Services are becoming too thin and too fragile. You cannot make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

UNISON lobby against ‘silent slaughter’ of council services

Edinburgh UNISON will lobby the City of Edinburgh Council budget meeting on Thursday 21 January 2016 from 08.45-9.45 against 2,000 job losses and £160 million in cuts to services over four years.

Tom Connolly, UNISON Edinburgh lead negotiator, said: “On top of the existing quest to find £150 million in cuts, the recent Scottish Government financial settlement means Edinburgh has to find another £10 million in cuts to jobs and services.

“2,000 jobs are being lost – that’s seven times the number lost at Tata Steel in Scotland. The Scottish Government have rightly set up a task force on steel jobs but they say nothing about local government. It has become the silent slaughter of council jobs and services.”

Monday, 18 January 2016

Cuts on top of cuts - January newsletter

Come to the lobby on 21 January; UNISON fights off increment cut; more must be done to stop compulsory redundancies and keeping bosses to procedures. Click here for a PDF

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Edinburgh signs up to UNISON Ethical Care Charter pledge

The pledge says: "The City of Edinburgh Council endorses the principles of the UNISON Ethical Care Charter and commits to working in partnership with UNISON towards its implementation.”

Amanda Kerr, UNISON branch secretary,
Ricky Henderson, Council Health & Social Care convener,
 Kirsten Hey, UNISON Health & Social Care steward,
and Andrew Burns, Council leader, sign the pledge
UNISON's Ethical Care Charter aims to establish a minimum baseline for the safety, quality and dignity of care by ensuring employment conditions which a) do not routinely shortchange clients and b) ensure the recruitment and retention of a more stable workforce through more sustainable pay, conditions and training levels.

Branch secretary Amanda Kerr said: "This is the first step on a long road to full implementation of the Charter. We congratulate the Council in signing up to this pledge and we know it is a tough commitment to make when the Council faces such huge cuts in its funding. However, there should be no greater priority than dignity and quality of care for those who need it, and dignity and quality of pay and conditions for those who deliver that care."

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Come to the UNISON AGM on 22 Feb


The Branch Annual General Meeting will be held on Monday 22 February 2016 in the Augustine Church, George IV Bridge Edinburgh, from 6pm to 8pm at the latest.

Branch secretary Amanda Kerr said: "This is a very important meeting. Please make every effort to participate. With all that the branch faces with cuts in jobs and services and possibly attacks on pay and conditions this is probably the most important AGM we have ever called.

"If anyone needs assistance or advice about submitting issues to the meeting, please feel free to contact the Branch Office."

A preliminary notice was issued on 15 December 2015. Click here to go to the AGM page on our website for deadlines and how to nominate for officer positions and submit motions.