Winter fuel grant application form for members

Worried about winter fuel bills?

With fuel costs continuing to rise, many members are worried about how they are going to pay this year’s winter fuel bills.  UNISON’s welfare charity There for You is again setting up a limited fund to help members on low incomes with a one-off payment.

The closing date for this scheme is 13 February and applications must be made on the winter fuel grant application form which can be accessed :

  • from the web –  Winter fuel grant application form 
  • by emailing or phoning Jo Ripley (01904 876670), Gelayol Holme (01904 876923) or Dave Thompson (01904 876668) for a copy of the application form (for those who do not have a printer

Applications must be received by the London Unison office by 13 February 2015 (details are on the form).

13 January 2015

Dear Members

In response to queries from a couple of our members with regard to the change of the salary payment date, the UNISON branch Executive agreed to speak with the Head of HR to clarify how the change came about.

A couple of years ago the University had agreed to alter the January pay date following requests from a number of YSJ UNISON members who were finding it very difficult to manage their finances over the December/January period.

In early 2014 the idea of a set pay date was floated at senior leadership level and discussed with the HR and Finance departments who had no objections.  In the meantime, a number of members contacted the branch asking for the possibility of a set date which was forwarded to HR.  In addition, at feedback meetings from the staff survey, two groups of staff spoke to the Head of HR in favour of a set date.  The matter was discussed further at a Staff Joint Consultative Committee liaison meeting where both UNISON and UCU were represented.  UNISON agreed that some of its members had approached branch officers requesting the change.

Please note that the amount we get paid is a part of our contract of employment but the date on which we get paid is not and would not normally be up for consultation, although some consultation did take place.   We believe that the majority of members think that the change is a positive move, particularly for those on lower incomes who have struggled to manage finances over a 5 week period.   We understand that HR confirmed the 22nd of each month with payroll which is in line with the date that most companies pay staff (between 19th and 23rd of the month).

The decision to start the change in February was to alleviate the problem of another five week period.

Please contact the branch at or Jo Thompson from HR if you need advice on changing your direct debits or have other financial issues due to the changed salary date.

Best wishes and Happy New Year

YSJ UNISON Branch Executive

Yorkshire Wildlife Park trip

YSJ Unison branch invites Unison members and their families for a day out at Yorkshire Wildlife Park on Saturday 6 September 2014.

The ticket prices are: Adults £10.50, OAP/Students £8.50, Children between 3 and 15 years £7.50, Children between 2 and 3 years £1 and Children under 2 free entrance.

Places are limited so please hurry if you wish to book by contacting Jo Ripley (0910 876670) or Gelayol Holme (01904 876923). Payment to be made in cash to Jo or Gelayol by 15 August 2014. Coach travel is free and will leave from YSJ main campus at 9am and return around 5pm.

View the poster advertising the event UNISON YORKSHIRE WILDLIFE POSTER

Yorkshire Wildlife Park Web address:





HE Pay – Result

Member Bulletin

HE Pay – Branch Consultation Result

UNISON members have voted overwhelmingly to accept the Higher Education pay offer. Following a period of consultation, 89% of UNISON members voted to ACCEPT the offer, with 11% voting to reject.

UNISON’s Higher Education Service Group Executive (HESGE) met on 30 May 2014 to consider the outcome of the branch consultation. The HESGE has agreed to accept the full and final settlement for 2014 – 15 and end the current dispute with the employers.

The HESGE thank UNISON members for their participation in 3 days of industrial action. Uniting together with other unions fighting against low pay has led to the Living Wage becoming a reality for some of the lowest paid staff in the sector, as well as a 2% salary increase for ALL staff across all pay points for 2014 /15.

The campaign for Fair Pay in Higher Education does not stop here. UNISON will continue its campaign for universities to become Living Wage accredited employers.

Members of staff delivering the student experience and supporting students in higher education deserve to share in the continuing success of the sector. UNISON will continue to campaign for future pay settlements to address the increasing costs of living for our members.

Work is also continuing to address important issues such as the gender pay gap and the growing casualisation in the sector as a result of this year’s pay settlement.

Please see the Full and Final Settlement Offer 2014-15 – 20 May 2014doc

Pay offer and member consultation

Higher education employers have made a pay offer of 2%, which they are calling a “full and final” offer. Although this is lower than we were hoping for, it is higher than the offers made over the last few years, showing how our campaigning and action can make a difference. See the national website for further details on the offer.

We will be holding consultation meetings on this offer during the week commencing 12 May:

  • Tuesday 13 May at 4:30 pm in room 119, De Grey Court
  • Wednesday 14 May at 8:30 am in room 222, Skell
  • Thursday 15 May at 12:00 pm in room 138, Holgate

You should also soon be receiving a voting slip on whether to accept this offer (which would also draw a line under the 2013-14 claim), or to reject it and push on with our campaign for a fairer deal for HE staff.

It is important that we reach as many members as possible. Please email us at and let us know if you, or your colleagues, are not receiving communication from the branch or information from national Unison, as we may need to update your membership details.

HE Pay Update – 2 April

Negotiations with the National HE employers – 2014/15

As reported previously, pay negotiations have started for next year’s claim. The starting point for these negotiations is that current salaries should be increased by at least the RPI rate of inflation (RPI is generally higher than CPI, which is the government’s preferred measure). Click this link for full details of the pay claim (Unison web site).

Next steps in the Pay Dispute 2013/14

UNISON’s Higher Education Service Group Executive met recently to discuss the arrangements to consult on the next steps in the unfinished dispute (as agreed by UNISON’s HE conference). Details of this consultation will be circulated to Branches shortly.

Of the other unions involved in the dispute, the main academic union UCU has announced a marking ban to start from 28 April 2014, but has no plans for further strikes. Further details on impacts for UNISON members will be distributed in April.

Members will have received a pay increase for 2013/14 as UCEA advised its University members to pay the 1% pay offer to staff in January 2014. This payment was imposed by the employers and it has not settled our dispute, as 1% was a figure rejected by members, who voted to take strike action against it.

Has the 3 day strike made a difference?

Yes.  Whilst the employers have not moved on the 1%, we have made some small gains. Since the start of the dispute a number of employers (some of whom had previously refused) have agreed to introduce the Living Wage. Bath University are the latest alongside King’s College and City University in London. UNISON branches are urged to put pressure on those universities that have not yet agreed a Living Wage. Help to progress a local campaign can be obtained from your Regional Organiser. The more members we have in your workplace, the stronger we become and more effective we will be in discussions with the employers. Potential members can join instantly by calling 0800 171 2193, join online at, or speak to your local rep.