Dear friend, I am writing to encourage UNISON members to take part in the very important election for our union’s general secretary, the most senior position in Britain’s largest public service union. This election comes at a time when public services and the workers who provide them are under unprecedented and sustained attack. In such circumstances, who leads UNISON is a vital question giving members all the more reason to use their votes.
Ballot papers should start to arrive at members’ home addresses from Tuesday of next week (10 November). Everyone in membership by early August should be eligible to vote. If you have not received a ballot paper by Monday 16 November, please contact UNISONdirect on 0800 0857 857 rather than the branch office. The ballot closes on Friday 04 December with the result due to be announced on Thursday 17 December.
There are four candidates on this year’s ballot paper (Roger Bannister, John Burgess, Dave Prentis and Heather Wakefield. Your Camden branch committee has nominated John Burgess, the secretary of the Barnet branch. In contrast to previous elections, branches which have made a valid nomination are also entitled to say why – in up to 100 words – they have supported a candidate, so please see below:
John Burgess has an impressive track record as Barnet UNISON Branch Secretary. He has led sustained resistance against attacks on UNISON members that has been lacking nationally.
Under John’s leadership the branch has won concessions and dramatically slowed the pace of privatisation in opposition to politicians determined to see almost all jobs and services outsourced.
The branch committee sees John as best placed to deliver the change our union desperately needs and to inspire UNISON members to fight back against attacks on trade union rights and public service workers’ jobs, pay and conditions.
Once again, regardless of which of the four candidates you eventually support, please do vote and encourage your UNISON colleagues to do the same.
With thanks & best wishes –
George Binette, Camden UNISON Branch Secretary.