At this time of the year, as well as looking forwards to 2016, we review our work as a Branch over the past AGM year.
We have achieved a lot on behalf of all staff this past year, for example, removing/ refunding student fees, ensuring students are treated fairly and under agreed policies, extending pay protection to existing staff who train to become Paramedics, a new disability policy and a range of policy changes that benefit all staff in every directorate and workplace.Our senior pay band agreement remains open to any EMT or Paramedic with a year post registration or post qualification to progress onto band 5/6. This agreement also enables EMT and Paramedics at the top of their banding to get an incremental increase every year for 5 years – something quite rare within the NHS.
We work in partnership wherever possible and where needed on the long standing issues, we use evidence based campaigning to achieve change.
There are many challenges coming our way in 2016, but you have a very committed and capable Branch Committee who work tirelessly to both hold the line and protect changes already agreed, as well as continuing to strive to improve your working conditions. We also have a large number of workplace representatives working in every area of the trust, providing you with individual support over issues you face.
We are gearing up for a change in our strategy over late finishes, as this is an area we continue to see staff working well beyond their contracted hours. There’s more about late finishes in our December newsletter and if you haven’t had a chance to read it yet, you can view a PDF copy here: https://putbacktheheart.com/unison-newsletter-december-2015/
Please also look out for the January Branch newsletter, which has a roundup of everything we’ve achieved with your help this year, and a look forwards to issues we’re still working on.
Last year we asked the trust to honour our meal break agreement over New Years Eve and this was a position fully supported by Anthony Marsh. We have asked the trust to offer the same level of support to staff this year.
Thank you to everyone who’s supported our campaigning and provided feedback over the past year. I’ve very much enjoyed my second year as your Branch Secretary and on behalf of the Branch Committee, I wish you all a safe and happy Christmas and very best wishes for the New Year.
UNISON Branch Secretary
East of England Ambulance Branch 20106