Poll: Unions - what is your view?

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General Chat Thread, Unions - do we need them and who is in one? in General; I'm in. Same as most others, as an insurance policy against if something bad goes down. Apart from that I ...
  1. #16

    TechMonkey's Avatar
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    I'm in. Same as most others, as an insurance policy against if something bad goes down. Apart from that I think they are a bit useless, mostly due to their members but that is a different story, but I can't complain as I got cheap car insurance through them when I started driving. Was chuffed. Also thinking about it I think it is one of those things you get more if you really get into it and find oppourtunities. Was giving a pack about a UNISON conference, not my cup of tea but thinking about it if you like that thing you get your hotel and food paid for you just have to get there and back, not a bad deal if you like that sort of thing.
    I also enjoyed my strike day but I think that scared a lot of people here, & I mean the union members, as they realised what could be done. After that they didn't seem so keen to strike, which is a bit wierd.

    why do I need someone in a room with me for a disciplinary should it arise, if I can't defend myself then there's something wrong
    Thats a bit like those that try and defend themselves in court. Yes you probably can state your case but do you know all the precedents, key words and phrases or legislation that can back up your case and help you out?

  2. #17
    farmerste's Avatar
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    my reasons

    i always used to be in a union, but i dont see the point currently, and as for scare tactics about allegations from pupils, you are entitled to legal aid to defend yourself should it worry you.

    my main reason for not being in a union is the fact that, the money you pay goes to fund the labour party, who have caused all the problems in the first place, what are the unions doing to teach us the causes of the problems??

    nothing !!

    kill the source of the infestation, and the disease will disappear


  3. #18

    Joanne's Avatar
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    labour?? really??

    GAAHHH!! DIDN'T KNOW THAT!

    Guess I will have to think twice about where my money is going :S

  4. #19

    russdev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by farmerste View Post
    i always used to be in a union, but i dont see the point currently, and as for scare tactics about allegations from pupils, you are entitled to legal aid to defend yourself should it worry you.

    my main reason for not being in a union is the fact that, the money you pay goes to fund the labour party, who have caused all the problems in the first place, what are the unions doing to teach us the causes of the problems??

    nothing !!

    kill the source of the infestation, and the disease will disappear

    That is true if it goes to court ok lets put it like this student accuses you.

    First you are called into heads office put on paid leave until facts can be sorted you summoned to disciplinary hearing (at this point no legal aid as not in courts).

    This is where you need unions as at this point and before whole thing can be sorted it out if it goes to court it becomes public record and your career is over no matter what outcome.

    Most important thing is making sure it does not go to court and trust me you might be able to do it yourself but when your career depends on it you want people who are use to it.

    Russ

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    beeswax (18th March 2008)

  6. #20

    russdev's Avatar
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    p.s

    You can choose if money goes to labour or not most unions have option for it to go union fund or labour link.

    Russ

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    Joanne (18th March 2008)

  8. #21

    Joanne's Avatar
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    oooh yeah i remember now... i chose for it NOT to go to them :P

  9. #22
    CAM
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    Do you have to tell your employer and would it affect your chances for contract renewal for temporary contract staff if you do?

  10. #23

    russdev's Avatar
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    No do not have tell anyone and if school did not hire you on basis of the being in a union you could take them to court as there is collective barging agreement in place between lga (local government association that all la's are part of) and unions.

    It would breaking that agreement.

    Russell

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    CAM (18th March 2008)

  12. #24

    Sylv3r's Avatar
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    Im in UNISON and i've never had to get them involved for any reason which is the way I want to keep it also.

    I think its important through working with students that you do have some sort of union representation - an allegation made by a student could cost you your job.

  13. #25


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    I am in Unison, but I may reconsider as they don't exactly seem to be fighting our corner when it comes to ICT outsourcing.

  14. #26

    vikpaw's Avatar
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    Thumbs up No-Brainer

    I'm with Unison, and all bar one or two of our support staff are in it too.

    It's a no brainer really when you work with students. It's so easy to accidental punch one and then there's no end of paper work trying to prove it was "reasonable force to prevent self-harm"... che<<tongue>>ek!

    We have an on-site representative (one of our members) and they get involved with any issue from the beginning and just having someone there is a nice comfort zone.

    Also, they have experience of similar disputes or can get advice from local officers that do, and so you can quote precedents, and it really does add a lot of bargaining power.

    When i've needed to call the local office direct, it has been slow to respond at times, but once you get their backing any case is much stronger.

    Lets not forget all the other benefits, like cheap car insurance, travel insurance, holidays away, free legal advice for any issue to member and family, free will writing service, banking, private pensions, tax rebate service. Sure, if the flyer dropped on your doormat you would probably bin it but when you get all that alongside the backed up employment rights, for only a meagre £7/8 per month, it's definitely worth it.

  15. #27
    muppet's Avatar
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    Question Which one?

    OK so I should be in a Union, and I fully intend to be......but which one?
    GMB?
    ATL?
    T&GWU?
    UNISON?
    Any others?

    I realise that this has probably been raised in a previous post but it seems a pretty apt place to resurrect it for an up to date opinion!!

  16. #28

    vikpaw's Avatar
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    Check with the support staff majority at your work.

    Unison are good in my opinion and the only other unions at our place are the teachers' ones.

    I think Unison have links directly with the LA to do with pay and other issues, in fact they tend to deal with mostly public sector staff, but then so do the others.

    Perhaps you could invite them to tender for your membership, see what freebies you can swindle out of them.

    Ultimately it's who you trust, what services they provide (see my previous post), and importantly how easy it will be for you to get access to help and advice when you need it. So if GMB is already in place at your work and there is a rep' there then that would make sense, it also adds to the total bargaining power.

  17. Thanks to vikpaw from:

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  18. #29
    muppet's Avatar
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    Thanks for your thoughts Vikpaw.
    I'm in a position where there are only 2 out of all the support staff (38) who are union members, both of them in UNISON. Funnily enough there are NO union reps at the school, and as far as I am aware there has only been one union visit to the school in the last 5 years!!!!
    I like the idea of putting it out to tender to see what freebies I can get, although I dont think a UNISON hat will be much of a fashion statment!!!

  19. #30
    Netman's Avatar
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    @Russ or other Union members...

    Has anyone got any Union contacts who might be willing to come onto Edugeek and answer our questions? Might help make things clearer...



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