Essex is worst-hit county for damaging cuts to children’s centres

Essex County Council has closed more children’s centres than any other local authority in England since 2010, UNISON research published today shows.​ The closures have devastated communities and left vulnerable families without access to vital education and health support, says the union. Freedom of Information (FoI) requests reveal that over a third (38%) of council-run […]

Closure of half of youth centres in east of England could have lasting impact on society

Huge cuts to youth services in eastern England risk creating a ‘lost generation’ of young people unable to access vital support at a crucial time in their lives, UNISON says today. New research conducted by the union has found that funding cuts have led to the closure of more than half of council-run youth centres […]

Become a pay champion in your council or school

Care workers, refuse collectors, social workers, teaching assistants, community workers, street cleaners and so many others go above and beyond every single day. Local government staff keep communities safe, clean and accessible, yet there is often little or no recognition for your hard work. With the cost-of-living skyrocketing to new highs every day, it’s time […]

Job cuts at Essex councils spell disaster for local communities

Essex residents will be hit hard by plans to slash nearly 100 council jobs, UNISON warns today. Redundancy notices were served at Thurrock Council today, with 19 jobs slated to go in the first round of cuts, a week after Southend Council revealed plans to lose 80 jobs. Thurrock is looking to make £18 million […]

Suffolk County Council cuts ‘take services past breaking point’

Suffolk County Council has announced plans to make £65 million in spending cuts, including lopping £11m off the staffing budget, it revealed today. Responding to the news, UNISON Suffolk County branch secretary Neil Bland said: “Councils have spent the last decade slashing spending to the bone, cuts on this scale will take services in Suffolk past […]

Colchester bin strikes off after workers accept improved pay offer

Council workers in Colchester have accepted an improved pay deal and cancelled the threat of strikes by refuse collectors, UNISON says today. Staff at Colchester City Council and Colchester Borough Homes accepted a rise of £1,925 this week – almost double the council’s original offer. Workers overwhelmingly rejected the council’s initial £1,000 pay offer and […]

Colchester’s bins, leisure services and crematoriums could be hit by strikes

Workers in Colchester’s bin depots, leisure centres and crematoriums are voting on strikes over the city council’s refusal to offer a decent pay rise, UNISON warns today. Colchester staff had asked for an above-inflation pay rise to make up for years of wages failing to keep pace with the rising cost of living. But the […]

John Toomey and Rob Turner hold the new banner

New banner raised in Cambridgeshire

Cambridgeshire County UNISON has unfurled a new branch banner for the first time in a demonstration outside the council offices. Emblazoned with the word “Solidarity,” it’s fitting that the banner’s first outing was at a Fire Brigades Union rally, with the branch showing UNISON’s support for a campaign against the dangerous watering down of safety […]

A group of people pose to celebrate signing UNISON's Anti-Racism Charter

St Albans pledges to become an anti-racist council

St Albans City and District Council is celebrating Black History Month by signing a charter aimed at combatting racism in the public sector, the council and UNISON announce today. UNISON’s Anti-Racism Charter commits the organisation and its leaders to a range of pledges designed to prevent racial bias. It includes championing a racially diverse workforce, […]

Bin strikes back off in Huntingdonshire

Industrial action in Huntingdonshire has been called off after the council agreed to implement the pay day UNISON settled last month. UNISON members were due to strike tomorrow, Friday 6 October. A joint release with the employer can be read on the Huntingdonshire District Council website. The background to the dispute can be read in […]

Eastern councils face ‘dire’ financial crisis totalling more than £330m

Councils across the Eastern region have a hole in their finances of £332m collectively for the coming financial year, making it extremely likely they will have to make huge cuts in essential services and jobs, says a report published today by UNISON. The figures, based on financial information gathered from local authorities across the region […]

Huntingdonshire bin strikes back on as council refuses to implement agreed pay rise

Refuse, housing and customer service workers at Huntingdonshire Council will strike as bosses continue to refuse to implement an agreed pay deal, UNISON announces today. UNISON tried to end a long-running pay dispute earlier this month when its members voted to accept a 5% pay rise — one of three offers made by the council. […]

Would-be Huntingdonshire Council strikers accept improved pay deal

Strikes are off at Huntingdonshire District Council after workers accepted an improved pay offer, UNISON said today. Staff including refuse workers had been due to down tools last month, but suspended action to consult on a range of new offers from council bosses. They have now accepted a rise of 5%, backdated to April and […]

Ministers should listen to the evidence on South Cambs four-day week

Government ministers should rethink their knee-jerk rejection of a trial into the four-day week at South Cambridgeshire Council and wait for the evidence, UNISON says today. Local government minister Lee Rowley has written to the council blocking an extension of the “experiment” into a reduced working week, according to media reports at the weekend. The […]

Support staff wearing UNISON tsb

Most jobs saved at strike-hit Suffolk primary school

Support staff at a Sudbury primary school have called off further strikes after accepting a new deal saving most of their jobs, UNISON announces today. Two dozen classroom assistants and midday supervisors at Pot Kiln Primary took three days of strikes in April and May after the school announced plans to sack 15 staff to […]