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Giving everyone a say

UNISON is an organisation made up of members and run by members and we make sure that each one of them has a say in how the union is run.

Your say counts

You are the union and you decide what the union does. Policy decisions are made at national conference and every UNISON branch elects delegates to attend and vote on their behalf.

In between conferences the National Executive Council (NEC) decides on issues and campaigns and works with UNISON staff to support members.

Our membership is two-thirds women and that is represented in our governing body. The NEC is elected in a secret postal ballot of all members and at least two thirds of the seats are held by women. 

Your say on health policy

The UNISON health service group brings together members in health from across the country who elect their representatives on the health service group executive.  UNISON branches elect representatives to go to the union’s annual health conference – it is here that issues like pay, health and safety and allowances are debated and decided on.  Conference decisions can have a real impact at local, as well as national, level.

When UNISON’s members speak on health policy, politicians listen. Gail Adams, UNISON Head of Nursing, is part of a new commission of experts, set up by the Prime Minister Gordon Brown, to advise on the future role of nurses and midwives.

Talking about your workplace

Every member of UNISON belongs to a local branch which is made up of people working for the same employer. UNISON branches hold meetings so everyone can get together to discuss important issues affecting you and your workplace.

Local stewards are there to represent you at work and help solve your problems.  Branch officers are elected to take on different roles to help organise the union’s work on behalf of its members. 

Branches campaign on local issues that are important to members and the public alike.  UNISON members have won important victories over issues like car parking charges in local hospitals and the selling off of sterile services.