As the UK’s largest public sector trade union, UNISON also recognises its responsibility to harness the skills and knowledge of its membership.
This is achieved by giving voice to public service workers on how public services are best provided and promoting equality in their delivery.
Equality is about ‘creating a fairer society, where everyone can participate and has the opportunity to fulfil their potential’ (DoH, 2004). Diversity literally means difference. When it is used as a contrast or addition to equality, it is about recognising individual as well as group differences, treating people as individuals, and placing positive value on diversity in the community and in the work place.
Historically, employers and services have ignored certain differences such as background, personality and work style However, individual and group diversity needs to be considered in order to ensure that everybody‘s needs and requirements are understood and responded to within employment practice and service design and delivery. This is embedded in the Equality Act 2010.
The diversity and equality branch officer, along with the equality representatives of our branch, play an active part in working with Lincolnshire County Council, and other employers, in achieving this. The Branch Officer attends policy road testing workshops, takes part in impact analysis and is a member of the management’s corporate diversity steering committee.
UNISON aim to respond appropriately and sensitively to issues raised by members and work hard to resolve the issues presented within the policies and laws that govern both the workplace and employee.
A voice for you at disabled members UNISON conference
Meetings have been arranged to ensure that members from under-represented groups within disabled members self organisation have better access to the disabled members conference agenda. The caucus meetings allow these groups to submit motions and amendments in line with the conference timetable - as set out by the Standing Orders Committee. There are four caucus groups – Black members; women members; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) members and Deaf (BSL users) members.
Attendance to the meetings will be funded nationally and are open to all disabled members who are NOT members of the national committee as the purpose of the meetings is to allow the caucus groups to have access to the conference agenda.