The Community, Charity and Private Sector

This is where we will post news and information for members working in the Community, Charity, Voluntary and Private Sectors.

Tanya San Juan is our branch-employed Caseworker/Organiser for this sector. You can email her here.

Karen Holdsworth-Cannon is our elected Convenor for the Community sector and can be emailed here.

SC_Recognition_signing.JPG Jane Armitage, Branch Secretary, here in September 2016, signing our new recognition agreement with Surrey Choices (Local Authority Trading Company providing services for adults with learning difficulties).







UNISON Community Conference

Sheila Wilson (Welmede Housing), Rose Sipani (RNIB), Helen Couchman (Dimensions UK and national UNISON SGE Rep) and Paul Couchman (Deputy Branch Secretary) all attended the UNISON Community Conference in Bournemouth in March. Rose spoke on the need for a £10ph minimum wage.

Pictured here from l-r: Helen, Paul, Rose and Sheila.


Sheila reports here on the weekend:

I attended the 2017 Unison Community Conference held at the Bournemouth International Centre from 3-5 March as a delegate for the Surrey County Branch along with Rose Sipani from RNIB joining other delegates from South East Region.  It was a small conference this year – maybe because many members had chosen to take part in the demonstration in London about austerity cuts in the NHS.

A meeting of the Community and Voluntary Sector took place at noon and this was followed by a meeting the Plenary session addressed by Steve Reed MP for North Croydon who outlined the problems facing both Labour and his constituency.

Useful workshops were held on Democratising Housing Associations, Dealing with Mental Health in a Workplace, Organising Disparate Workplace, and How to lobby your councillors and MPs.

The South East regional meeting was held on Friday evening followed by an excellent meal out for the group at the local Italian restaurant.

A Panel Session on Regional Structure for the Community Service Group took place on Saturday morning with presentations from West Midlands Branch and the Essex Branch.

There were the usual Caucus meetings at lunch time.

Saturday afternoon was the formal conference with lively discussions by speakers on the 20 motions.

Amendment 7.1 to Motion 7: “Funding for Charities and the “National Living Wage” was delivered very ably by Rose (RNIB) for Surrey County Branch and was supported by conference.  This will enable campaigning for the £10 per hour minimum wage to be included in the conference report.

Most motions were not contentious but there was a very lively discussion by many members on Motion 4 about including Caucus meetings on the official timetable of conference.  SGE opposed but Conference supported!! 

Conference finished on the Saturday afternoon and a social meeting was held at the Eden Garden Bar.

The conference provided a useful opportunity to meet and exchange ideas with other members – so important when so many of us lone work and lack time and opportunity to meet in our work place and outside.

Sheila Wilson


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