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Latest Covid-19 News from our Branch and Regionally

UNISON South West Help Hub

Got a coronavirus issue you need to talk to us about? Self isolating and need to know your rights? Want to ask a question?

E-mail us or send us a message on Facebook and you’ll be put in touch with a UNISON organiser.

Coronavirus Official Guidance

Joint unions publish Long Covid Protocol

UNISON, GMB, UNITE, NEU, NASUWT, NAHT & ASCL have produced a joint ‘Long Covid Protocol’ that we are urging school employers to sign up to locally. This protocol builds on national NJC and Burgundy book guidance. It has been signed by head teacher unions ASCL and...

Updated Covid-19 advice

The premature lifting of legal Covid measures by government has led to severe stress and confusion for schools, pupils and parents as we battled the recent wave of infections. This has has left many asking “what should my school be doing now?" The answer is that...

Vaccine Mandate on Hold

Jab backdown the right thing to do, but the damage has already been done, says UNISON These ill-thought-out rules have worsened the staffing crisis hampering the NHS and social care and caused significant upset. Commenting on the announcement today (Monday) that the...

Vaccine Mandates in the NHS

UHP Trust have started sending letters out to staff in relation to their COVID-19 vaccination status. You might not be aware but there is new legislation regarding mandatory vaccinations. UNISON reps and Health and Safety reps will be available to help advise and...

Long Covid

Shelly Asquith, TUC Health & Safety Policy Officer spoke and gave a presentation on Long Covid at the recent Regional Council meeting on Saturday, 15 January 2022. Here is Shelly’s presentation along with links to reports and guidance (see below). TUC Report on...

COVID-19: return to masks and working at home

LGA Circular Please continue to visit the LGA’s Coronavirus: information for councils webpage for all up to date advice. https://www.local.gov.uk/our-support/coronavirus-council-information-and-support All information contained in this circular is correct at time of...

UNISON condemns vaccine mandate for NHS

Plymouth in UNISON was glad to hear UNISON General Secretary Christine McAnea and others speaking out against to folly of vaccine mandates in the NHS. Its already been a disaster in the Care Sector with valuable staff choosing to leave rather than be bullied into...

The official advice to Schools

https://educationhub.blog.gov.uk/2021/10/11/a-joint-letter-to-parents-of-secondary-school-and-college-students-in-england-on-covid-19-testing-and-vaccines-from-the-secretaries-of-state-for-education-and-for-health-and-social-care/

11th Hour Update on Vaccine Mandate in Care Homes

From November 2021 there will be a new legal requirement for staff working in care home settings in England to demonstrate proof of COVID- 19vaccination.   In addition to care home workers, other groups of UNISON members who visit care homes such as social workers and...

UNISON guidance on mandatory vaccination in care homes

From November 2021 there will be a new legal requirement for staff working in care home settings in England to demonstrate proof of COVID- 19vaccination.   In addition to care home workers, other groups of UNISON members who visit care homes such as social workers and...

Care staff more likely to decline jab if threatened by employers

Gavin Edwards says forced vaccination could make recruitment and retention crisis worse Care staff more likely to decline jab if threatened by employers, says UNISON survey   Care staff are nearly twice as likely to turn down a Covid jab if they’ve been threatened or...

New NJC COVID Circular

Please find attached a new NJC circular on COVID-19 as we continue to leave lockdown. The circular has taken much longer to come out than we would have liked, but UNISON has been pushing the employers to take a more progressive approach to supporting employees during...

Online Covid19 Response fund now open again

Dear Colleague We're pleased to announce that members can once again apply online to the CoVid Response Fund.  By way of reminder, members who are in financial difficulties as a result of CoVid could be eligible for a grant of up to £500. The application process is...

Changes to shielding advice

You may have heard that the government is changing its shielding advice for people who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) to Covid-19. It is advising that CEV staff who cannot work from home can return to the workplace from 1st April. In practice for CEV...

Libraries re-opening from 12 April

UNISON understands that the Government intends that libraries should re-open for public browsing during Step 2 of the Government’s roadmap on 12 April. This is the earliest possible date for libraries to re-open and must be in accordance with social distancing...

Can My Employer make me get the Jab?

There is no legal requirement for any individual to be vaccinated against Covid19 to fulfil any job role, but there is some concern that employees in the Care Sector will be required to, and some already make the same demands of the Flu Jab. UNISON's primary demand is...

Is Zero Covid 19 Possible?

ZERO COVID: The campaign to beat the pandemic This motion was submitted by a member and seeing as Covid 19 has dominated everything in the last year and is the reason that this years AGM will be online we thought we should discuss it there. I'm sure most people just...

To PPE or not PPE

Unison have had a few queries about PPE and face coverings in the workplace, particularly schools where local rules are being devised not only for what you must wear but also what you may and may not wear. To be clear PPE will always be compulsorily and never optional...

Masking the Issue

Following the return to schools (and some other workplaces) the issue of wearing various forms of face coverings has been a live one From 1 September, government guidance gives head teachers in secondary schools in England the “discretion” to introduce face coverings...

How Lighthouse Financial Advice can help UNISON members.

 Having trouble coping with the financial impact of coronavirus?  The coronavirus pandemic has quickly changed the way we live our everyday lives and, while our main concern is safeguarding our own health and that of our loved ones and the wider community, many people...

Early years and childcare providers

The Department for Education has issued updated COVID advice for early years and childcare providers. UNISON has a number of serious concerns with it – please see see the links below to read the guidance and our initial response. We will issue further guidance in due...

Back to school in September?

Staffing, safety and vulnerable children must be priority for schools’ return, says UNISON Responding to plans published last Thursday by the government for the full return of schools from September, UNISON head of education Jon Richards said: “Everyone wants all...

Don’t get caught out by Quarantine

As lock-down eases and hopes of a semblance of normality rise no doubt many of you are thinking about your holiday. Some of you may have longstanding bookings and are hoping either to travel or to get a cancellation and refund. You may not all have realised the...

Stay Safe at School

Schools Update Here is a summary of the advice for members in schools that UNISON issued on Thursday 28 May, which you should have received by email, we will be holding an online webinar aimed at UNISON members and activists in schools to discuss risk assessments,...

Possible Tax Relief for Homeworking

With so many of you working from home since March Plymouth in UNISON raised the the issue of payments for members. The council is not introducing a homeworking allowance, whereby the council pays employees an allowance, instead employees they are able to make a claim...

Covid-19 latest schools advice and guidance 

Latest update following meeting of National Schools Committee  Government proposals to increase school and early years pupil numbers from 1 June  UNISON’s ​National Schools Committee met on Thursday 14 May and agreed that the union should continue to oppose the...

Is it safe to go back to school?

The guidance for schools has been released by government Planning guide for primary schools: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/preparing-for-the-wider-opening-of-schools-from-1-june/planning-guide-for-primary-schools UNISON branch guidance is reproduced here...

There for You; HOW WE ARE RESPONDING TO THE CORONAVIRUS

There for You the charity for UNISON members is here to help UNISON members get the practical and financial support they need.  Despite the current difficulties, we remain open and are here to help in any way that we can. Currently all staff are working from home and...

COVID19 Latest Information

I know you are all worried. So are we all, but UNISON members are also key players in managing this crisis, providing as we do vital public services including being the biggest union in the NHS and local government, and that is a comfort to me at least. So much of the...

Coronavirus and Schools

Re: Covid-19 FAQs for school staff (England) Please find attached FAQs for school staff in England. They cover: Operational issues Pay Easter and weekend working Health and safety Home working Covid-19 FAQs for school support-staff - England The FAQs can also be...