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A union for Christmas – and for life

Unite Glasgow Retired Members’ branch encourages young people into the union with Christmas gift membership
At a time when environmentally sustainability is at the top of the public agenda, people across the UK are aiming to have a more thoughtful, less wasteful Christmas.
That’s precisely what branch secretary Mick Rice and his Unite Glasgow Retired Members’ branch have aimed to do this year – by gifting a Unite membership.
Now, anyone with a loved who believes they’d benefit from union membership can order one online. The recipient will receive a Christmas card explaining their gift and how they can activate their free, one-year membership.
“The recipient will not have to pay anything as you have already paid when you bought the Christmas card,” Mick explained. “Cards cost £30 each. As the membership fee is £28.50, the real cost of the card is only £1.50.”
The offer is only applicable to people who are 16 or over and are unemployed, students or retired, since those in work pay different membership dues.
“I have two children in university right now and over the summer for example they’ll take occasional temporary jobs in bars and restaurants,” he explained. “I thought, they really could do with the support of the union, just as the union could do with young people’s enthusiasm.”
Thanks to the support of both the Unite Glasgow Retired Members and the union’s Glasgow and Lanarkshire Community, Youth Work and Not for Profit branches, Mick’s Christmas gift idea for his own children can be yours too.
To order a Unite Xmas Card click here 
The above is an extract from the Unitelive website. Click here to read the article in full

Demonstration at Art School

Branch members were amongst thoses suporting the demonstration at the Glasgow School of Art on 31st October. Unite members have been, and are, being treated abominably by their employer. The workers have issued the following statement:

"We are workers at The Art School bar & venue on Scott Street. We are also students and alumni of the GSA.
This August, after years of loyal service,  we were ‘invited’ to an unpaid meeting with your Student President and hatchetmen hired by the GSA, at which we were told our hours would be cut to zero with immediate effect. We were told that GSASA Ltd., trading as The Art School, was about to collapse and that severe cuts to wages were the only solution to save the business, and that we 
wouldn’t get any hours till Freshers Week. In the meantime, we were unable to pay rent or bills.

Following a sustained campaign and  positive negotiations with senior management in September, we were assured that front-of-house staff would be issued new contracts guaranteeing minimum hours per week as well as the paid breaks and staff benefits already assured in previous terms. 
Not even a month later, senior management  have already reneged on these commitments, revoking paid breaks and failing to honour the guarantee of minimum hour contracts, with some staff– especially those who speak out– receiving no hours at all. While many of us have been left with no hours or wages, senior management have sought to bring in more staff and have paid 
them substantially more– despite claiming  there isn’t enough money to give us 
minimum hour contracts!" 

To download the full statement click here

To see more photos click here

Lobby of Scottish Parliament

The Scottish Pensioners Forum organised a lobby of the Scottish Parliament to mark the United Nations International Day of Older Persons (UN IDOP). The lobby took place on Tuesday 1st October and Branch members were among those attending.
The objectives of the 2019 UN IDOP are:
⁕ To help draw attention to the existence of old age inequality, and how this often results from a cumulation of disadvantages throughout life -and highlight intergenerational risk of increased old age inequality.
⁕ To bring awareness to the urgency of coping with existing and preventing future old age inequality.
⁕ To explore societal and structural changes in view of life course policies: life-long learning, proactive and adaptive labour policies, social protection and universal health coverage.
⁕ To reflect on best practice, lessons and progress on the journey to ending older age inequality and changing negative narratives and stereotypes involving “older age”.

For more pictures click here


Strike for the Climate

The global school student strikes over climate change and the actions by Exctinction Rebellion have inspired millions of people. On Friday September 20th, school students walked out in another global day of action, and asked others to join them.
There was growing TU movement support for the 20 September Climate strike and the Glasgow Demonstration – including the TUC, the STUC , all the major unions including UNITE, Glasgow Trades Council and many local union branches.
Our new banner was on the demonstration (pictures supplied by Irene Graham)

Facebook Discussion Group

Following discussion at the Branch, a Facebook discussion group has been set up. As it is a closed group, you will need to ask to be approved. Only approved members can see posts etc. Branch members can join at:
If you click on the above link, it will open in your usual browser. If you are not already logged into Facebook on that browser, you will need to log-in (if you are not already on Facebook, you will need to join, if you wish to participate in the discussion group).
There are a few, common sense rules that you need to observe when using the discussion group, but they can be summarised as 'Be Nice'.

Jimmy Friel: Presentation of Unite Scotland Gold Badge

Branch member Jimmy Friel was presented with the first Unite Scotland Gold badge in recognition of his outstanding service to the union over many years. The presentation was made following the Branch meeting on 2nd May. Click here to see pictures of the presentation.

New Branch Banner Design

The May Branch meeting discussed and approved the design of the new Branch banner.


Shrewsbury 24 Campaign

Terry Renshaw of The Shrewsbury 24 Campaign was the invited guest speaker at the April meeting of the Branch.
Terry outlined the history of the campaign to overturn the unjust prosecutions of 24 building workers following the first national building workers strike in 1972. The workers, all UCATT members, were arrested and charged with conspiracy, unlawful assembly and causing affray, apparently just for organising and forming picket lines at a McAlpine construction site. At subsequent trials held in December 1973, January 1974 and February 1974, 6 workers were sent to jail whilst others received suspended sentences. The Shrewsbury 24 have since campaigned for their cases to be referred to the Court of Appeal and hopefully, to have these miscarriages of justice overturned. Such a Court action might incur significant costs, currently estimated to be in the region of £150,000. Unite the Union has pledged to underwrite a substantial portion of the costs, with the remainder being dependent on donations.
Branch Chair Jake McLeod thanked Terry for his presentation. In addition to the Branch affiliating to the campaign, a collection from the 35 members present raised the sum of £273.00 by way of a donation.

Terry receiving a cheque for the collected donations

Glasgow Educational & Marshall Trust

If you who have younger relatives and friends from Glasgow seeking to return to education, the Glasgow Educational & Marshall Trust provides funding for the people of Glasgow to advance their academic or vocational qualifications - whatever age or stage.
The Trust gives grants to people who have lived in Glasgow for over 5 years to assist with furthering their education.
Amounts awarded range between £100 and £1250. We give around 60 grants every year to the value of about £50,000.
The Trust has been established for over 75 years and is in fact an amalgamation of a number of local Educational Charities.
The funds that the Trust distributes are solely from an investment fund that has been built up over generations.
The Trust has a board of 22 governors drawn from educational institutes, the churches, Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Trade Union Council, The Trades House of Glasgow, The Merchants House of Glasgow.
Further information from: