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Equality E-Bulletin
November 2020
Equality E-Bulletin – November Update
Overview of UNISON equality and Covid
This bulletin aims to keep you updated on UNISON’s equality campaigns, bargaining and organising resources and events. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have also produced regular reports for the NEC and national equality committees. For a copy of the latest report, email equality@unison.co.uk.
Webinar on Homeworking during the pandemic: Opportunities and Challenges – 23 November 2020 at 12 noon
This event will take place on Monday 23 November from 12 noon to 1pm. It will be chaired by Donna Rowe-Merriman and speakers include Robert Baughan, Deirdre Costigan and Clare Knights. This event will:

  • Highlight the range of issues affecting workers that have been forced to work from home for prolonged periods during the Coronavirus pandemic.
  • Discuss the health and safety aspects of working from home – what responsibility does your employer have to ensure that you are working safely?
  • Identify any legal issues
  • Discuss the impact of working from home for disabled workers.
  • Identify areas of policy; and
  • Outline UNISON’s Bargaining Guidance and model Home Working Policy.
Register here
Young Workers month – Survey of young members
November is TUC Young Workers month when we celebrate young workers and their contribution to the trade union movement.

During Young Workers month, UNISON is running a comprehensive survey of all our young members to find out what their experiences have been during the coronavirus pandemic. We will also be asking about young members’ experiences in UNISON, and what young workers think will be important during a post-Covid recovery.

If you’ve already taken the survey, or you’re not a young member yourself, why not share it with a younger friend in UNISON?

Take the survey
Survey of UNISON members – tell us about your experiences of hate crime
The government is thinking of changing the law on hate crime. We want to make sure they listen to the experience of UNISON members before they decide on the changes.

We’re surveying member to find out their experiences of hate crime and hate incidents – both in the workplace and outside. We want to know if this is something you’ve ever experienced personally, or have seen happen to someone else, and if you have ever reported this.

Your answers are really important to us – please help us by taking this short survey.

Take the survey
20 November  – Transgender Day of Remembrance
This is an international day to remember all those who have lost their lives to anti-transgender violence. More details of the dreadful roll-call can be found here.

UNISON members can mark the day by promoting transgender rights at work using UNISON resources. The factsheet on transgender rights at work is available here.

A guide on how to be a good trans ally is available here.

If your employer doesn’t have a trans equality policy, a model policy can be found here.

International Eliminate Violence Against Women Day  – 25 November
Given the context this year of the Covid-19 pandemic, lockdown restrictions and the alarming rise in domestic abuse, it is more important than ever that we raise awareness of violence against women and the impact on them – in the workplace and in wider society.

UNISON is planning to tell the stories of some of our brilliant women activists and the work they are doing to combat violence against women in the workplace and in wider society on 25th November and in the 16 days that follow leading up to Human Rights Day on 10th December.

Look out @WomeninUNISON and on our Facebook page and in Activist digital.

Find out more
The post-Covid future – what do young workers need?
Friday 27 November 2020, 1pm
Cat Smith MP, Shadow Minister for Young People, will join us for a panel discussion about young workers’ concerns following the Covid-19 pandemic. She’ll be joined by Gloria Mills, UNISON’s National Secretary for Equalities, and Shelly Asquith from the TUC, for a discussion chaired by Jess McGuire, Chair of UNISON’s National Young Members Forum. Attendees will be able to submit questions when they register for the event.
Register for the event
#No2H8November – be an upstander
This November, stand up against all hatred and intolerance
Find out more about Tell MAMA’s campaign
Tackling hate crime and hate incidents: a workplace issue
This UNISON guide looks at our role in identifying and encouraging reporting of all forms of hate crimes. It includes a Model Hate Crime and Hate Incident Policy.
Download the guide
Black People, Racism and Human Rights
The Joint Committee on Human Rights have published their report: “Black People, Racism and Human Rights”, which concludes that the Government must urgently take action to protect the human rights of Black people, including within healthcare, criminal justice, nationality and immigration and democracy.
Read the report
1 December is World AIDS Day
World AIDS Day takes place on 1 December each year. It’s an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate those who have died from an AIDS-related illness.

Over 103,800 people are living with HIV in the UK. Globally, there are an estimated 38 million people who have the virus. Despite the virus only being identified in 1984, more than 35 million people have died of HIV or AIDS, making it one of the most destructive pandemics in history.

World AIDS Day is an opportunity to show solidarity with the millions of people living with HIV worldwide. Most people do this by wearing an HIV awareness red ribbon on the day.

Find out more
Black Members Live! 22-23 January 2021
Black members are invited to sign up for our online event replacing the 2021 UNISON Black members conference.  The conference has regretfully been cancelled due to Covid restrictions.

Black Members Live! follows the successful Disability Live! and LGBT+ Live! events of this autumn.  The programme will include keynote speakers, webinars and workshops.

Find out more and register here
New factsheet: Why pronouns are important
The factsheet explains why pronouns are important and how to be inclusive by using gender neutral pronouns.
Download the factsheet
Out in UNISON 69 – Winter 2020/21
The latest newsletter aimed at LGBT+ workers and UNISON members is now available.
Download the newsletter
February is LGBT+ history month
Start planning now for what your branch can do to raise awareness of the ongoing struggle for LGBT+ rights.

Information on how to order Rainbow materials to promote LGBT+ equality in your workplace can be found here.

A Voices and Visibility wallchart is available to download here.

UNISON’s slideshow cataloguing its own history in campaigning for LGBT+ rights, from the early 1970’s to 2019 with the conference decision to include the ‘plus’ is available here.

Find out more about LGBT+ history month
Planning begins for online event to replace UNISON’s cancelled 2021 National women’s conference
Following the continued COVID-19 restrictions, a decision has been taken to cancel the national women’s conference. The conference was due to have taken place on 18-20 February 2021. The National Women’s Committee will work with the Conference office to organise alternative virtual events for February 2021. Look out for updates online and in our next bulletin.
Click here for the latest equality resources, including Covid-specific guidance
Click here to sign up for Equality E-bulletin


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