UNISON’s priorities on disability are led by the union’s own disabled members. We help disabled members by fighting discrimination and campaigning and organising at workplace, regional and national levels.
There are more than 10 million disabled people in the UK. Cuts to public services and benefits have a disproportionate effect on disabled people, especially as over one and a half million of them live in relative poverty because of low benefit levels and the lack of suitable accessible jobs.
UNISON members campaign and organise at three levels:
- Within the workplace: many of our disabled members are active in the workplace, protecting workers’ rights, advising colleagues and highlighting issues. Some hold the position of branch disability or equality officer, others are branch health and safety reps, branch secretaries, learning reps, treasurers, workplace reps, branch chair etc.
- Regional disabled members groups: each of UNISON’s 12 regions has a disabled members’ group. Each group meets on a regular basis; at its annual general meeting they elect two representatives (at least one of whom must be a woman) to the union’s national disabled members committee.
- National disabled members committee: the national disabled members committee includes 24 regional representatives and disabled representatives of the union’s national disabled Black, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender, and deaf members who are native British Sign Language users. The national committee also provides opportunities for other self organised national committees’ disabled co-optees to be involved.
If you would like to join the regional group, please complete the form and speak to your branch about joining.