ONE UNISON branch officer courses

The following branch officer courses, unless indicated otherwise, are available to newly or recently elected branch officers.

Please apply by no later than Friday 27 April 2018 using the event application form. Please note you can only opt to do a branch officer course or the workshop sessions, not both.

These courses are designed to help UNISON branch officers, especially those new or recently elected to the position, carry out their roles effectively. By the end of each course it is intended that participants will know and understand the following:


  • The role and responsibilities of the branch chair
  • Finding the balance between chairing formal and informal meetings
  • As a Branch Chair developing a quality of skill, sensitivity and commitment to encouraging membership/activist involvement and development

Communications officer

  • Develop knowledge about the range of possible branch communications
  • Increase confidence of communication officers
  • Debate the pros and cons of different communication methods for different purposes
  • Develop a branch communications plan to use after the course

Equality Coordinator

  • Define the role of the equality coordinator
  • Establish how to access resources, make useful links and develop strategies for supporting members and self organisation
  • Understand the vital role that self organisation plays in UNISON.
  • Campaign and get equality issues on the recruitment and bargaining agenda

Health & safety officer

  • Develop a practical understanding of the role
  • Look at how health and safety can be used to organise within the branch and how it fits into the branch organising plan
  • Provide information needed to carry out the role and knowledge of where to get further information

Branch Secretary

  • Understand the role of the branch secretary in ensuring that the functions and tasks of the branch are carried out effectively and in a timely manner
  • The relationship between the branch secretary and the branch committee, branch members, region and service groups
  • Their own development needs, with a personal action plan to meet these


  • Understand branch finances
  • Work with the branch to establish transparency in financial transactions
  • Develop protocols for budget setting and procurement
  • Understand the role of budgeting and organising within the framework of UNISON’s objectives
  • To enable treasurers to promote an organising union through branch budgeting

Women’s officer

  • Understand the role and responsibilities of the women’s officer
  • Learn how to access resources, make useful links and develop strategies for supporting women in their branches
  • Increase knowledge of women’s issues and how to progress issues in UNISON

Young members’ officer

  • Introduce young members’ officers to their role
  • Explore how they can make a difference to UNISON and get young members voices heard
  • Discuss how to organise and enthuse young members in their branch
  • Raise awareness of issues affecting young members
  • Empower young members’ officers to plan for the future with confidence

Political campaigning

  • Understanding of UNISON’s political funds. How they work, how and when they can be used
  • Campaigning with the Labour party in the community. What are the joint industrial and political issues?
  • UNISON and links with local constituency Labour parties. The mechanics around being heard and involved politically
  • Joint political campaigning and working with other affiliated trade unions, including the purpose and role of the Trade Union & Labour Party Liaison Organisation [TULO]