Saturday, 8 October 2016

Personal report of the Development and Organisation (D&O) subcommittee of the UNISON NEC 21st September 2016

Membership and recruitment – the number of new joiners was up on the same month in the previous 2 years. There was growth in private sector recruitment (2,723 YTD Year To Date) but a loss of 20,417 in the public sector YTD. 98,187 members were recruited in the YTD to the end of August 2016 but 115,881 left membership in the same period.
There was a comment from an NEC member that another union was encouraging new recruits to tick the part time box to get lower subs. There was discussion on the proposed merger between NUT And ATL. ATL should not recruit in state schools - in practice this was not the case. Comparison of subs information from various unions would be circulated to members of the Committee.
There was a report titled ‘Cloud sourcing/Uberisation – a new organising challenge’. This outlines the challenges and opportunities afforded by the likes of Deliveroo and Uber etc and the need to unionise in this area. Service groups are to be liaised with regarding such false self-employment particularly in public service provision.
UNISON Organising app upcoming developments - There is a new app which is a development on the existing UNISON organising app, which aims to increase user interaction. There are an estimated 900,000 smartphone users amongst our 1.3 million members. This would encourage the Smartphone users among our 1.3million to participate more fully with UNISON organising activity. The App will be based on ‘gamification’, specifically designed to encourage three audience areas; membership, activism and organising.
A membership audit certificate is required by UNISON in 2017. The audit will focus on how member records are added, updated and removed from the membership system and also how paper application forms are handled and how we ensure invalid addresses are corrected. 
DOCAS admin charges – over the summer RMS Operations have been developing systems that will enable the union to view and monitor DOCAS administrative charges. 
There was a presentation about the UNISON digital strategy with a cautionary note that nothing is ever going to beat face to face interaction.  The traditional workplace is changing and digital empowers people to do things for themselves. Members expectations are changing and young members in particular. Work streams are 1. Ensure all staff and activists are able to make the most of digital. 2. Getting members more active and engaged through digital interactions. 3. Improving the digital experience members have at key points. 
The national officer responsible for Young members reported on the UNISON Young members weekend held in Leicester in May this year. 100 members attended with 8 from the North West. 70% of those attending stated that it would help them get more active in UNISON. The weekend included a street campaigning exercise where delegates undertook petitioning for a statutory Living wage. 
An updated report was circulated on the unions ‘evidence’ based approach to reasonable adjustments. The guide has been produced in consultation with national disabled members committee. This guide will apply to all Regions and branches. A question was raised as to whether branches can access national funds for expensive adjustments. A definitive answer could not be provided and the officer was to seek legal advice. Explanations were given on what the legal definition of disability is, what the 3 requirements of the duty are, what a single gateway scheme is, how the evidence based process incorporates both elements of the medical and social model and what application and approval process is for the submission of requests for reasonable adjustments. 
Certification Officer – Notice of a preliminary hearing 8th October 2016 (Complaints re 2015 General Secretary Election) with substantive hearing scheduled for 3rd and 4th November 2016. 
The Motions referred from Conference together with the rule amendment changes were considered.
An organising response to the Trade Union bill, Organising for growth in the Community and Voluntary sector, Supporting our activists who have to deal with stressful situations, Bullying and Young members, Strengthening our union – supporting and Developing our stewards, Trade Union facilities, Branch self-organised groups. 
Honorary Life membership was agreed for Brian Morris from 5 Boroughs health branch (North West Region). Brian has been staff side secretary in the 5 Boroughs trust for 20 years and has been a member for 35 years. 

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