Wednesday, January 11, 2017

UNISON NEC elections - nominate the candidates seeking positive change!

This is one of those blog posts prepared without using UNISON resources, because it addresses the important question of internal UNISON elections – to our National Executive Council (NEC) – and so UNISON resources cannot be used to campaign in the election (that can get people into trouble!)

Diligent readers of this blog will know that your blogger is standing down after what will have been fourteen years on the NEC, having been given time off for good behaviour. In my absence (and I honestly don’t think that this is cause and effect) the rank and file left in the union probably has a good chance of increasing the numbers on the NEC who stand for an effective, campaigning and democratic trade union.

Supporters of all three of the defeated candidates in the last General Secretary election (who between themselves outpolled the successful incumbent) have come together with the shared intention of challenging all those who supported the failing status quo then and continue to do so now. The candidates seeking the necessary change in UNISON are organising under the banner of the UNISONaction Broad Left and the following statement of purpose;
UNISONaction Broad Left - What We Stand For

Over 400 conference delegates attended the launch of the group at National UNISON Conference in June 2016.

The meeting was convened to discuss the lack of effective leadership throughout UNISON at National level in most union structures.
UNISON is meant to be a lay led union but currently the majority of the NEC, most service group national committees and the national Labour Link Committee are dominated by the internal aims of some national officers rather than led to the needs of UNISON members.

This lack of effective leadership is one of the central factors behind the inability of the union to seriously challenge the continued destruction of our public services, the cut in our real earnings of over 25 % in the last 8 years and the escalating attacks on our pensions.

These issues are absolutely central to our members.

Yet even where members voted for action on pay and pensions that action was undermined by prevarication, delay and the overwhelming desire of officers, supported by the majority of the national leadership of our union, to end the disputes at the earliest opportunity rather than seek real improvements for lay members.

That lack of real leadership has cost our members dear.

Activists who seek to challenge this position are increasingly threatened with individual disciplinary action to silence them and warn off others.

Our UNISON democracy is circumvented in some ways and grossly abused in other instances.

UNISONaction Broad Left believes this situation cannot continue and the union needs to be cleaned up.

To do that means electing an alternative leadership throughout our structures.

UNISONaction Broad Left is composed of a wide range of activists of different views on some issues but who are working together to bring about positive change in our union to benefit our members.

Wherever possible UNISONaction Broad Left will seek to get agreed candidates to stand for all national lay posts in future with the aim of electing a new national lay leadership to bring about the changes needed.

We would welcome UNISON activists to join us and we have contact groups in every area which you can be involved in.

All personal contact details will be confidential and kept securely and clearly no UNISON resources will be used in our activity

A national UNISONaction Broad Left site is being developed to update activists and assist in work to replace the majority of our national leadership.

If UNISON is to even try and fight to represent our members interests there is no option but to change our national leadership who year after year have failed our members.

Please consider joining us and playing your part in building a more democratic stronger union and ensure we achieve a national leadership capable of delivering that.
As things stand, it is reported that the following candidates are seeking nomination in the following seats for the National Executive Council elections;
UNISONaction NEC Slates

Service Group
General
Female
Male
Reserved
<£9.42 per hour
Community
Kieran Grogan
Janet Bryan
-

Energy

-
-
-
Healthcare
Neil McAllister
Jordan Riviera
Roger Hutt

-
HE
Sandy Nichol
Kath Owen
-
-
Local Govnt
Paul Holmes,

Jane Doolan
Andrea Egan
Paul Gilroy
-
Police and Justice
Declan Clune (SE)

-
-
WET
John Jones
-
-
-





National Seats




Black Members
-

April Ashley
Hugo Pierre

Young Members
Josie Cartwright
       -
-
-
National Disabled  Seat
Roger Lewis (Gt London)
Pam Howard (NW)



Regional NEC Seats

General
Female
Male
Reserved
Eastern


Jonathan Dunning
Pauline (aka Polly) Smith
East Midlands


Gary Padgett

Gt London

Sonya Howard
Helen Davies
Sean Fox

Northern




Northern Ireland




North West
Tony Wilson
Evelyn Doyle
Karen Reissmann
Steven North
Natasha Hall
Scotland
tbc
tbc
tbc

South East

Jacqui Berry
Diana Leach
Dan Sartin

South West


Berny Parkes

Wales

Mia Hosling
Mark Evans

West Midlands


Dave Auger
Shazziah Rock
Yorks and Humberside

Greta Holmes
Sarah Littlewood
Adrian Kennett
Vicky Perrin
                                   
The online presence of the UNISONaction Broad Left is expected soon and I will post a link here as soon as I can.
In the mean time, UNISON activists who want UNISON to be the better trade union which it has the potential to be should try to get appropriate candidates from the lists above nominated by their branch.
Each branch can nominate for candidates in their own Region, and in any Service Group in which they have members, as well as making nominations for the “national” constituencies for black members, disabled members and young members.
UNISON resources may not be used for campaigning – the election procedures are available online on the UNISON website as is the nomination form (also in word format) (if you are nominating more candidates than can fit on one form you need to complete and submit multiple forms).

Good luck to all those candidates seeking nomination in the hope that they can help UNISON realise its potential!

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