Training dates for 2018

The Unite Scotland training programme for 2018 is now online. The training courses offer the chance to

  • become a workplace rep — help your colleagues and make your workplace fairer
  • become health and safety rep — ensure that your bosses are doing what’s required to keep you safe from harm at work
  • learn some new skills for  the different roles in the union branch, such as union learning rep or equalities rep
  • get specialist knowledge in key areas, such as pensions and mental health.

Edinburgh course dates are below.

For reps starting out

All reps must complete certificates 1 and 2 — either for workplace reps or health and safety reps.

Time off work for trade union training is governed by the council’s agreement on time off and provision of facilities for trade union representatives (PDF). Key points from this policy, with references, are that

  • you should be trained within six months of being made a rep (7.1)
  • you are entitled to paid time off for training, ‘subject to the exigencies of the service’ (11.1)
  • new workplace reps are entitled to 14.4 hours away from work in one month to shadow a senior rep. (11.1)

To apply for a course

  1. contact the branch to confirm we have you down as a rep and have notified the Council of this
  2. check that you can be released from work for the course dates and have this confirmed by the head of service.

Some managers may want you to record your time off in myHR. Do this in the absence section under other absences. Select Paid time off then TU training from the list of reasons.

If you have difficulties getting time off, contact your rep or someone in the branch for advice. Remember, you are entitled to be trained for your union duties. This is backed by law and council policy. Any refusals—and any requests you make—must be ‘reasonable’.

Edinburgh courses

All Edinburgh courses below take place Monday to Friday in Unite Edinburgh office at 22 York Place.

Workplace reps certificate

  1. 29 January to 2 February or 27 to 31 August
  2. 19 to 23 March, 22 to 26 October or 5 to 9 November
  3. 14 to 18 May
  4. 11 to 15 September

Health and Safety

  1.  26 February to 2 March or  1 to 5 October
  2.  23 to 27 April or  29 October to 2 November
  3. 14 to 18 May
  4. 11 to 15 June

Other courses

Equality and Diversity runs from 3 to 7 September in Edinburgh.

Branch officials course runs from 28 May to 1 June and 12 to 16 November in Edinburgh.

In Glasgow, there are courses on

  • mental health awareness
  • pensions
  • union learning reps 1 and 2.

Scrap the cap – actions and events this week

The public sector pay cap is on the agenda at a couple of event this week. Read about the events below and let us know in the comments if you’re coming along.

Pay up now petition

We would encourage everyone to sign UNISON’s petition calling on the UK Government to scrap the public sector pay cap.

In one week the petition has received more than 100,000 signatures, so please add yours to send the message to the Tories that the public will not stand for the continued attacks on public sector workers.

Pay up now rally in Edinburgh – 7 October

UNISON have organised a march and rally in Edinburgh this Saturday 7 October to protest the public sector pay cap. The march will meet on Johnstone Terrace, beside Edinburgh Castle, at 11:30am.

Read about Saturday’s pay up now rally on UNISON Scotland.

Jimmy Reid memorial lecture in Glasgow – 5 October

Tomorrow Thursday 5 October will see the Scottish Left Review host the fifth annual Jimmy Reid memorial lecture in Govan, Glasgow from 6pm. The lecture specifically invites public sector trade unionists along.

Mark Serwotka, general secretary of PCS, is giving the lecture on ‘pay, people and power – the progressive case for public services’. The lecture will cover austerity, the public sector pay cap and a vision for the future of public services.

Read about and book tickets for the Jimmy Reid lecture at the Jimmy Reid Foundation.

 

Manchester protest and events against austerity

The People’s Assembly Against Austerity are hosting a series of events to coincide with the Tory party conference in Manchester on Saturday 30 September 2017, including a national demonstration on 1 October. Read about the events on the People’s Assembly site.

If you are interested in going along, let us know by speaking to your rep or commenting below. Unite Scotland sent a contigent along to the recent anti-austerity demo in London, so it would be great to gauge interest in going down to the Manchester events.

The past few years alone in Edinburgh have seen thousands of public sector jobs lost, services for communities and our most vulnerable cut, wages stagnate and outsourcing and privatisation put key services into the hands of profiteering companies.

Join us in Manchester and tell the Tories ‘no more cuts, no more austerity, no more attacks on workers’ rights or standard of living’.