UNISON’s international policy is determined by national delegate conference which meets annually and considers resolutions from branches regions and the national executive committee (NEC).
The role of the branch international relations officer (BIRO) is to encourage among branch members an awareness of UNISON policy on international matters and an understanding of the importance of international issues to everyone.
The London Region Europe and international committee currently has the following on its agenda: international solidarity with trade unionists in Colombia , Cuba , Nicaragua , South Africa and many more.
It works with a number of non-governmental organisations and solidarity campaigns for specific countries and on more broader issues with, for example, Amnesty International, Banana Link, Oxfam, War on Want and the World Development Movement.
Branches are allowed to affiliate to bodies or organisations of its choice. These choices are generally presented at Branch Members’ meetings by the International Officer so that the members can vote in favour of or against supporting them.
Organisations UCL Branch currently supports are:
Action for South Africa http://www.actsa.org/
Amnesty International Trade Union Network http://www.amnesty.org.uk/content.asp?CategoryID=377
Anti-Slavery International http://www.antislavery.org/english/default.aspx
Cuba Solidarity Campaign http://www.cuba-solidarity.org.uk/
We may also support other international campaigns as they arise.
UCL UNISON’s Branch Committee occasionally votes to make donations to the victims of natural disasters such as the recent Haiti Earthquake and the Phillipine Typhoon. The upper limit for donations is £200. We encourage members to give generously to these calls for help, even a few coins in a collection box is more than these people possess themselves at times like these, and when disasters on the scale of Haiti do occur the TUC generally organises methods for trade union members (and others) to donate electronically from its website http://www.tuc.org.uk
A global campaign to challenge countries to end abuse of migrants by protecting their human rights was launched around the world on 18 December 2009 to mark the 20th anniversary year of the adoption by the United Nations General Assembly of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (ICRMW) in 1990.
Dave Prentis, UNISON General Secretary, says:
“I’m very proud that UNISON welcomes migrant workers to the UK and values their contribution to our economy, our society, and our culture.”
One of the reasons the branch supports the London Living Wage Campaign: http://www.livingwageemployer.org.uk/ so strongly is because migrant workers are vulnerable to exploitation by unscrupulous employers.
See more at: http://www.unison.org.uk/migrantwork
Immigration Advisory Service details at http://www.iasuk.org/contact-us/london—central-london.aspx
Refugee and Migrant Justice details at http://refugee-migrant-justice.org.uk/?page_id=204
The International Labour Organisation promotes decent work across the world. It was was founded the year after the First World War ended in the belief that universal, lasting peace can be established only if it is based upon decent treatment of working people and it became the first specialized agency of the United Nations the year after the Second World War ended..