Welcome to the Campaign Hub for Better Off in UNISON.

We know it’s tough. Bills are rising – making it more expensive to heat your home and feed and clothe your family. And no matter how many hours or how hard you work, it’s almost impossible to make ends meet.

That’s where we come in. Because when the going gets tough having UNISON in your corner can really make a difference.

Nationally we are campaigning hard for an above inflation pay rise for all public sector workers to help deal with increasing costs. We are also asking for an immediate increase in the national minimum wage to £15 an hour because no one should be on poverty pay.

But it’s not only nationally where we can make a difference. What we do together locally often leads to more money in people’s pockets.

Here you will find information about local wins that we’ve had that are making a real difference to our members lives. Examples of successful claims that you may wish to replicate in your branch.

Don’t forget, if you’ve had a win in your branch let us know, it may help another branch.

Lets rise together to end the cost of living crisis.


Mental health social workers begin a further five days of action, says UNISON

Monday 15 January 2024 For immediate release Mental health social workers begin a further five days of action, says UNISON Mental health social workers employed by Barnet Council have started a five-day strike today (Monday) in an escalation of their pay row, says UNISON. The union is calling for a recruitment and retention payment so […]

Mental health social workers striking over unfair pay, says UNISON

Mental health social workers striking over unfair pay, says UNISON Mental health social workers employed by Barnet Council, have taken over nine days of strike action in a row over staffing levels and a market supplement payment. The service, staff say, is facing chronic staffing issues, with the waiting list to be seen now up to 15 […]

Victory for Camden traffic wardens in long-running pay battle, says UNISON

Wednesday 20 September For immediate release Victory for Camden traffic wardens in long-running pay battle, says UNISON Camden traffic wardens are celebrating after securing a pay boost in their long-running dispute with NSL, Camden Council’s private contractor, says UNISON today (Wednesday). More than 100 workers took 59 days of strike action in their battle to […]

Same risk should mean same reward, says UNISON

Porters and cleaners at Epsom & St Helier NHS Trust demand equal treatment and fair pay

Camden traffic wardens enter fifth week of continuous action

Company top boss gets 60% pay rise but says union claim is too high

Suggested actions

Here are some suggestion actions that you can take – don’t forget to let us know of any successes! You can contact Emma Davey.

Potential asks of employers:

  • Subsidised childcare/childcare allowance 
  • Free school dinners for staff/subsidised hot meals 
  • Hybrid working – improved policy if already exists (see templates for bargaining guides)
  • Lump sum to WFH  
  • All contracts to be in house or on LLW if on a long-term contract 
  • Shift allowance 
  • Unsocial hours claim 
  • Job evaluation – training and upscaling those working above their grade 
  • Work with credit unions 
  • Working hours regulations 
  • Partnership working on functional skills/ESOL training to increase career progression of staff 
  • Kitchen facilities  
  • Parking permits for carers 
  • Overtime to be paid  
  • Pay policies in place 
  • Sick pay 
  • Parity of T&C’s 
  • Ancillary benefits  
  • Subsidised travel costs /travel card bought in bulk 
  • 0% Season ticket loans
  • Free uniform
  • Wellbeing days 
  • Free period products for staff

Things you can do as a branch:

  • Promote UNISON College  
  • Are you paying the correct subs? campaign
  • Campaigns on car park charges 
  • Members briefing/training ‘managing your money 
  • Promote There for You  
  • Food packs for days of strike action  
  • Promote membership services such as lighthouse 

Success Stories

Here we’ll post some of the wins our branches have had, or any good initiatives that employers have come up with. Little wins can make a real difference in the long term. We hope this will encourage you to do similar things in your branches.

Well done to Westminster branch who successfully negotiated free period products for their workplaces!

Read more here

Well done to the following branches who have successfully negotiated an increase in mileage payments:

  • Hounslow – 45p to 65p
  • Bromley Healthcare – 56p to 61p
  • Lewisham Healthcare – 56p – 61p (for community staff)

Well done to SOAS who have had their London Weighting upped to £4,900. 

Kings Healthcare branch have successfully negotiated for 70% of band 2 HCA’s to be regraded at Band 3.

Read more here 

North Middlesex Hospital have successfully won an increase in pay for the Medirest staff from £9.65 to £10.37 an hour. Medirest have also agreed – after a request from UNSION – to give all Medirest staff a 50% discount in the canteen and in Costa on site.  They are also now providing a sandwich, bottle of water and bag of crisps to all staff on all shifts.  This is remaining in place until March 2023.

South London and Maudsley branch have successfully negotiated for Healthcare Assistants on band 2 to be regraded at Band 3.

Kingston Hospital won agreement from the trust for:

  • Capped nursery fees
  • Increase in uniforms for staff from 3 uniforms to 5 as members reported that it was costly having to wash uniforms regularly to ensure they had enough clean
  • Increase in mileage rates
  • Agreement to reimburse ULEZ charges and use of pool cars for staff that need them
  • Free breakfast for staff working nights and a hot meal priced at £2 available daily

National Campaign Hub

Share your story

Share your story

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  • How has the cost of living crisis effected you? What do you want to say to the Government?
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