Oxford International Women’s Festival 2016



Friday 4th March 1.30pm – 4pm @

– Unison Oxfordshire County Branch

What next? Women’s lives in the ‘age of no retirement’. A workshop

Oxfordshire County Council, County Hall, New Rd, Oxford OX1 1ND
Free – Wheelchair access – All welcome.
Organiser: Debbie Hollingsworth.
Contact: 07812 350892 and/or wedgedaisy@gmail.com

Work and retirement are changing. We have to stay at work for longer.
What do these changes mean for all of us? The workshop will:
– raise key questions and issues
– make suggestions for planning
– plan to take your ideas forward
Speaker: Jane Watts.
Booking recommended? Yes.
How to book: Email wedgedaisy@gmail.com by noon on 3rd March 2016.

 2016 Women’s History Special Newsletter

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Oxfordshire County UNISON AGM 2016

The Annual General Meeting of Oxfordshire County UNISON Branch took place on Monday 22nd February at the Four Pillars Hotel in Oxford.

Full details of the reports submitted by Branch Officers as well as the approved minutes of the 2015 AGM are available on the AGM section of the website, which can be accessed through the link or via the Branch Business menu.  This section includes the reports submitted to previous AGMs and associated business.  If you have any questions regarding these reports or the overall branch business then please contact us via email  or by phone 01865 815990.

Details of 2017 AGM will be published in due course.

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Save Oxfordshire’s Children’s Centres


Oxfordshire County Council plans to close most of its 44 children’s centres and seven other units to save £8m.  Eight remaining centres (likely to be Banbury, Bicester, Witney, Abingdon, Didcot, Blackbird Leys, Rose Hill/Littlemore and Barton/Sandhills) would be used to form part of a new referral service for babies to 19-year-olds.

In December 2014 A petition signed by David Cameron was presented by about 100 campaigners to the authority in a bid to save the county’s 44 centres.  In December Council leader Ian Hudspeth had said he did not envisage the closure of any children’s centres stating “There was a worst case scenario about children’s centres… I said I’d listen and I think this proves that we have listened and we’ve delivered a package that’s going to be appreciated by everybody and actually means we envisage no closures.”

A campaign website has been set up here and a 38 Degrees petition here.  Please contact the UNISON Branch Office in County Hall to find out how you as UNISON members can help us oppose the cuts.

***Campaign Meeting – Oxford Town Hall Tuesday 3rd November 2015 7.30pm***

The following dates are relevant for the campaign including Talking Oxfordshire events which are public meetings where people can have their say on the proposals:

(Please note Oxfordshire County Council are now advising people to register in advance – links below)

Talking Oxfordshire public consultation event at Banbury Town Hall 

2nd November 2015, 7pm – 8.30pm

Talking Oxfordshire public consultation event – Regal Centre Wallingford 5th November 2015, 7pm – 8.30

Other dates important for the campaign:

Budget consultation closes. – 16 November 2015

Council Consultation Open Meetings
Wednesday 18 November from 6 – 7.30 pm at Kings Centre, Osney Mead, Oxford OX2 0ES
Monday 23 November from 6 – 7.30 pm at Didcot Civic Centre, Britwell Road, Didcot, OX11 7JN
Monday 30 November from 6 – 7.30 pm at John Paul II Centre, Webb Court, Causeway, Bicester OX26 6AW

Government Spending Review, which sets out how the government will invest in priority public services and deliver further required savings –  25 November 2105.

Council’s Performance Scrutiny Committee considers all detailed savings options and the feedback from the public and consultation responses – 17 December 2015.

Local Government Finance Settlement (House of Commons approves the annual funding for local government) – Week commencing 14 or 21 December 2015

Performance Scrutiny Committee – 16th December 2015

Cabinet agrees budget proposals. – 26 January 2016

Council agrees budget. – 16 February 2016

C Centres dates for talking Oxfordshire

Letter-from-Sam-Gyimah-MP-to-Committee-on-Childrens-Centres detailing the DoE consultation on children’s centres – July 2015 . This letter is not on the DoE website.

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South East Region Disabled Members’ AGM & Training Weekend 27 – 29 Nov 2015

[Note deadline for registrations is 30th October – please contact branch for details]

The South East Region Disabled Members’ AGM will take place at The View in Eastbourne at 1pm on Friday 27 November, lunch will be available from 12 noon. At the AGM delegates will elect members to represent the region’s disabled members on various regional committees, and also to elect representatives to represent the region on national bodies. These nominations are integral to Unison’s democracy.

The AGM is followed by the training weekend.

Friday 27 November 5pm to Sunday 29 November 1pm at The View, Eastbourne

“Disability Campaigning”

Speakers include:
Philip Connolly, Disability Rights UK Gloria Foran, Unison National Officer

Come and find out more about Campaigning and Disability Discrimination,

Contact: s.comerford@unison.co.uk Deadline to register: 30 October 2015

[Travel expenses can be claimed in advance of the event – Crèche also available]

The purpose of the training weekend is to give delegates an understanding of the union’s democratic structures, to explore various employment, social and domestic aspects that impact on disabled members in the workplace, and also to influence the work of the Committee in the coming year. The theme of this year’s event is ‘Disability Campaigning’.

Delegates can choose to attend the AGM only, the training weekend only, or both events.

Download the flyer & application form:

Flyer for Disabled Members AGM and Training Weekend

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NO To Austerity: YES To Workers Rights


On Sunday 4 October, the Conservative party will open their annual conference in Manchester. After five years of austerity, falling living standards, pay freezes and huge cuts to public services, a new parliament won’t offer a fresh start to working people and their families. The Conservatives’ new plan is an old plan – back to the future with  more of the same.

We were told that austerity measures were a necessary, short, sharp dose of medicine . But five years later, the prescription is the still same. More plans to privatise public services, like the NHS. The government telling hardworking people, like midwives, teachers and transport workers, that they must work harder and longer. Public servants’ pay frozen for 4 more years.  Threats to jobs in the public sector. Plans to sell off social housing. Cutting tax credits, disability benefits and help with the rent. Unfair targeting of young people.

Trade unions have a proud tradition of standing up for workers, their families and the services everyone uses. So now the government is threatening the right to strike.

In the trade union bill, they propose to make it harder for unions to take strike action to oppose their cuts. They want to make it harder for workers to speak out – allowing employers to use agency workers to break strikes and putting huge restrictions on pickets and protests. In short, they want to silence millions of union members and threaten their right to strike.

So we all need to speak out now. March in Manchester on Sunday 4 October and tell the Conservatives  that we say “No!” to austerity. And tell them that workers need a voice. That trade unions give workers a voice. And that instead of austerity, it’s a resounding “Yes!” to workers’ rights.

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