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Branch Update March 2021 – Shielding Advice and more

Dear Member
 
Please see below our latest update with information for those that are shielding, and some useful advice for you. 
 
There are also some really useful free  training opportunities for all members to make use of so please have a look and take a chance to brush up your skills. 
 
A link is also included for the UNISON Knowledge Base full of useful advice on a wide range of workplace issues that you may be facing.
 
Kind Regards
 
Becky Everett 
Branch Secretary

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DON’T FORGET THIS WEEK – our Annual General Meeting 2021

This Years Annual General Meeting will be carried out on Zoom and we have created 3 sessions to give you more chance to join in as we appreciate your working hours and availability may differ. You have been emailed your joining details if you haven’t received your links please contact us.

We have also arranged some interesting Guest speakers at each session from across UNISON covering a range of issues which we hope you will find useful.

FRIDAY 5 MARCH 2021 12noon – 1.30pm
Guest Speaker – Gavin Edwards – UNISON National Head of Social Care

FRIDAY 5 MARCH 2021 6pm – 7.30pm with a Quiz to follow
Guest Speaker – Chris Tansley – Regional National Executive Committee Member

SATURDAY 6 MARCH 2021 11am – 1.00pm
Guest Speaker – Jon Richards – UNISON National Secretary for Social Care, Education, Local Government, Police and Enforcement.

Don’t forget that we have a Quiz after the meeting on Friday night so get a pen and paper at the ready and something to drink.

I would urge you to attend where possible especially members who would like to continue being stewards and reps as these will be ratified in these AGMS.

Agenda, Minutes and supporting documents, branch officer reports and zoom advice can be accessed access by visiting…

https://bit.ly/2NSiXat

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Branch Secretary Update – for School Support Staff 3 January 2021

Dear School Support Staff

Happy new year to you all, the news of the last few days must have caused great anxiety for you. Will schools follow the scientific advice and close for an additional 2 weeks and work on rolling out the Covid testing or will the Government continue to insist schools are safe? You as staff or the families of pupils who attend your schools should not be waiting in limbo like this.
Unless any announcements are made later today it is looking likely Schools in Derby will open. UNISONS advice from our National School Team supported by the National Schools Committee in which I sit, is that schools are currently not safe for pupils or staff. 

I am very aware you don’t want schools to close you are simply requesting that they are safe, and safe for all pupils and staff. 

Last week I attended the Independent SAGE meeting, it was made very clear that schools should not reopen yet. The link for the meeting I attended can be watched below…


Yesterday evening, after seeking legal clarification UNISON sent all school support staff with an active email address an email containing a letter, for you to send to your head and or employer. Ideally send this letter individually but if you would rather send it as a team / group please do so. Ensure every name you add has agreed to be added and ensure you do make yourself available to work from home. I would advise sending this as soon as possible so you’re employer can make arrangements. We have already been notified of potential school closures due to staff exercising the right to be safe. This is your right under Health and Safety Law.

I am happy to be copied into this email. beckyeverett@derbyunison.org
Should you have any concerns please don’t hesitate to contact me on the above email address. I will be keeping an eye on my emails today and I will respond but it won’t be immediately. I am officially back at work on Monday 4th January. 


I will be contacting all our School Stewards today via email to ensure they are fully updated, should you decide that now is the time your school has a steward and or a Health and Safety Rep please contact me and we can get you on board with supporting members in your school and helping keep your workplace safe. 


Your employer and Head teacher / Principle has a duty to keep you safe at work, asking you to cross bubbles is one example of you not being safe and putting you at a greater risk. We understand how it’s near on impossible to adhere to social distancing this is another risk.The new strain of Covid is spreading at a vast speed. 
If you work in a school for a separate cleaning or catering contractor please ensure you notify your employer if you are taking this action advised by your union. 


Your school needs a steward and a Health and Safety Rep right now. Never before have we needed a steward in every workplace. 
It’s not too late to join unison, please inform your colleagues who may not be in a union that we are working to keep you safe in the workplace. New members can join at https://join.unison.org.uk

Keep in touch. 

Kind regards 

Becky Everett 

Branch Secretary