UNISON, University of Southampton branch
Welcome to the UNISON University of Southampton Branch website.
UNISON is the second largest trade union in the UK with more than 1.3 million members. Nationally, UNISON supports staff from a range of sectors from council workers and librarians through to teaching assistants and police support staff. That means that if you have a problem, that’s an awful lot of people fighting your corner.
The University of Southampton branch of UNISON represents a large number of support staff at the university. As a branch, we recognise the vital contribution of clerical support staff to university life and work towards helping them feel valued and secure a fair deal across all campuses. After all, without you, there would be no library books issued, no time tables drafted, no essays submitted, no fees processed, no exams arranged, no invoices paid on time… The list is endless.
This means where necessary we negotiate on pay and working conditions. We support our members when they face issues of harassment and discrimination. We work hard towards making sure our members opinions are heard and acknowledged. And because UNISON is a democratic organization, we work closely with our members to ensure their views are known in the union at a local and regional level. You can find out more about some of the campaigns UNISON has been involved in nationally on the main website.
It might sound like a cliché, but we not only believe that people are stronger when they speak and work together – the reality of being in UNISON is that we act upon it too.
The Branch is run by a committee which consists of members elected to take on different roles. These range from being a Steward, Health & Safety Rep, Equality Officer, Education Officer, Treasurer or Branch Secretary. It's people like our local UNISON equal pay officer and branch treasurer who build the union and work to win everyone a better deal. All these people are volunteers employed in other jobs by the University who care about where we work and how we are treated. Our stewards, health and safety reps and officers are people just like you who want to make a positive contribution to their working lives and the lives of their colleagues around them. Its hard work but we think the people involved would agree that it’s worth it to feel like they’re making a positive impact. It’s hard to beat the feeling of knowing that you helped someone.
We believe that this is your union. We have a huge organisation behind us that can advise and expertly train you - but the person who best knows how your office works, what your job entails and what the best way to deal with issues is you and we’d love for you to get involved. We hold regular meetings, including an annual general meeting. This is how people like you get elected to the branch committee and other UNISON structures. There is information on getting involved in UNISON on this website but if you’d like to know more about becoming involved please contact your local UNISON representative or the Branch Office. It’d be great to have you on the team.
Help & Advice
If you have a problem at work or even just a general question you want to talk over in person, please contact your local UNISON representative or the Branch Office. We recognise that sometimes it’s a big step to acknowledge that a situation is unacceptable and sometimes it’s hard to talk about problems. Please be aware that we treat all our enquiries with respect and do our best to be supportive. You can also feel confident that we treat all information as absolutely confidential. In short, our motto is “Your friend at work” and if you have a problem, no matter how small, that’s what we are.
What Our Members Say
"I would like to thank you... for your support and help through what turned out to be a very stressful 6 months. I really could not have done it without you and thanks for listening and the good advice you gave me along the way." - A University of Southampton UNISON member (2009)
"I do suspect that without union support it would have been that bit more difficult. I personally find it reassuring to know that I'm with the union and would otherwise find the task rather daunting. Thank you again." - A University of Southampton UNISON member (2009)