Welcome to Wirral Unison

Wirral Unison local government branch represents and supports over 6,000 members within Wirral council and the private sector. We negotiate for better pay and conditions and help individual members that have problems and campaign for a fair society.

On this site you can look up the list of branch officers and their individual responsibilities. Check out our health and safety page for your latest health and safety news, you can also look at our news section to see what's happening in the branch and there is also a photo gallery. We hope this website will give you all the information you need about your branch.

For all newsletters please view the news page.

Future Council

The Future Council Project is moving ahead stage by stage. All 76 units of the Council have now been reviewed. This process started on the 3 March and ended on the 11 April 2014. A Service Review Template was used to assess the cost, value for money, reach, performance and contribution to outcomes for every service. This included the new spans of control, layers of management and job families that are a key part of the Future Council Project.

Spans of Control

The Authority intends to establish clear reporting lines and have consistent management structures across the organisation. The recommended spans of control for management roles are based on the job family framework and will be the following ratios for Team Leader to Employee:

1:12 People Care
1:12 Customer Service and Operations
1:6 Organisational Supports
1:6 Regulations
1:6 Commissioning and Commercial
1:4 Strategic Planning

The Manager to Team Leader ratio will be 1:5

What Happens Next

The Chief Officer Group will now make recommendations to the future model of delivery for every service.

These recommendations will go to the Council to decide:-

  1. what services the Council will continue to deliver;
  2. what changes and staffing reductions will apply to those services that we continue to deliver;
  3. what services it will commission other agencies to deliver. This could be another local authority, a community group, the Health Service, a public private partnership or a private entity on its own;
  4. the services it will no longer deliver or commission others to deliver.

All UNISON Members who work for Wirral Council will rightfully be concerned with regards to their own future employment prospects. Members now face the prospect of either working for another employer or even losing their job.

These concerns will only be increased with the knowledge that the intended £9.4 million savings will be found from post reductions. The timeline for the savings is £4.5 million from 01/10/14 to 31/03/15 and £5 million from 01/04/15 to 31/03/16.

Future Council will not be limited to the initial target of £9.4million, it will also be the main source of the £45million projected savings for all savings beyond 2014/2015.

Next Actions

We are having regular meetings with the Leader of the Council and Senior Management and have voiced our serious concerns as to the number of job losses and the subsequent threat of large scale redundancies these savings will create. We are obtaining as much information as we can and passing that on via Branch Committee and all Stewards Meetings.


This is the first of a series of Newsletters detailing the Future Council Project. The next Newsletter will cover the new Job Evaluation process contained within the Future Council proposals.

What You Can Do To Help

We have produced model Letters that members can use to send to their Ward Councillor and the Leader of the Council that detail members concerns on Future Council proposals. Please see your local steward for details.

Given the proposed changes from the Future Council project it is more vital than ever that we can contact our members. Therefore, if you haven't already done so, please let the Branch know your personal / home email address.


To be presented at the Annual General Meeting of the Branch on Wednesday,
12 March 2014 in the Civic Hall,
Wallasey Town Hall at 12.15 p.m.

Please click here for the WIRRAL UNISON ANNUAL REPORT

17 February 2014


Don't forget to attend the Seventeenth Annual General Meeting to be held on Wednesday, 12th March 2014 in the Civic Hall, Wallasey Town Hall from 12.15pm.

Phil Goodwin – Branch Secretary

At the time of writing this newsletter we are still awaiting sight of the Ernst and Young report which will give the Authority options to re-model the whole Council.

We will continue to vigorously oppose any further cuts to your terms and conditions, and will continue to engage in the difficult negotiations with the Council to seek to minimise the impact on our members. We will continue to support members who need representation when going through these difficult worrying times.

Sue Kellett – Branch Chair

You should by now have received a ballot paper, an election address booklet and a freepost envelope for you to elect six Branch Officers for 2014/15. Make sure you read the statements and return your completed ballot paper in the freepost envelope, to be received no later than 12.00noon on Friday, 7 March 2014. It is important that members use their vote to give a truly representative result.

Hannah Plimley - Young Members Officer

Why are trade unions relevant to young people?

Where young people are part of a workforce represented by a trade union they get a better deal, including improved pay and career opportunities, and are less at risk from exploitation, accidents and injury compared to young workers in non-unionised workplaces.

This is why one of my priorities, if I am re-elected, is to work with Ian Ward, the Membership Services Officer, to recruit and support more young members as part of a Recruitment Campaign.

Ian Ward – Membership Services Officer

As Membership Services Officer I am always looking for ways to promote the benefits of being a member of UNISON and perhaps more importantly try to attract and recruit new members. Throughout this spring and summer I will be working closely with the branch officer for young members (Hannah Plimley) so we can target our younger colleagues and highlight the importance and relevance of being member of a modern trade union such as UNISON.

For other benefits visit the UNISON Membership discounts page at: Unison Membership

Mandy Gorman – Equalities Officer

UNISON is committed to achieving equality for all in our workplaces, in our branches and throughout UNISON's structures. Equality is also a high priority in our negotiating and campaigning work. It is one of UNISON's founding principles, eg UNISON has been at the forefront of campaigns for equal pay, for rights at work for same sex partners, and for proper protection for disabled workers. Tackling racism remains a key priority. I am committed to ensuring that all our members are able to be involved in the union and have their voices heard. If you would be interested in being a member on an Equalities Committee or if you are facing any issues in your workplace and need support please contact me via the Branch Office on 0151 – 643 7007

Paddy Cleary – Acting Treasurer

I have taken over as Branch Treasurer since Geoff Bradfield retired and I would appreciate it if any expense forms you have could be sent in to the Branch Office by 5pm each Thursday for payment on Friday.

Sue Mathie – Womens Officer

As the lead Branch Officer for Sport and Recreation I have been supporting those members affected by the proposals to change the shifts and opening hours in Leisure Centres and I have also been negotiating with the Strategic Director and the consultants involved.

There has also been an increase in bullying cases compared to previous years; all pay scales from low paid to higher earners are victims of bullying, which cause our members a lot of stress, and which costs the authority large amounts of money when our members are off sick due to the length of time cases are taking to be resolved. Staff are being put under more stress as posts go and they are being expected to pick up the extra work. Many are afraid to speak up for fear that they will lose their jobs.

Being a member of a trade union is vital now more than ever


It is a crucial time for people to show the Government that public services matter. Public services that we all rely on have been unfairly and unnecessarily targeted for savage cuts following the financial crisis. The North West of England has taken more than its share of the burden. Show your support for our services and the workers who provide them by joining a March and Rally in Liverpool on Saturday 15th March 2014:

10.00am Assemble at the Pier Head
10.45am March through the City centre departs
11.30am Rally at St Georges Plateau

Nick Bower - Health & Safety Officer

If you know of any members who have been hurt in a Workplace accident or are suffering from a Workplace disease they may be entitled to claim Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit.

If they call 0845 6031358 this will put them through to the correct department and they need to ask for either form BI100A, which is for workplace accidents or form BI100PD which is for Industrial Diseases to be posted out to them.

There is no guarantee that they will receive any benefit as it is assessed on how much they think the accident/ disease has affected them and it may require them attending an appointment to see a specialist.

If anyone wants any further information on this then they can either contact me or follow this link https://www.gov.uk/industrial-injuries-disablement-benefit/overview

Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) 2014
England and Wales

The Regulations changing the LGPS in England and Wales will come into force with effect from 1 April 2014.

A final reminder that anyone who has currently opted out of the LGPS (England and Wales) but wants to ensure the earnings link protection on any final salary benefits they have earned up to April 2014 (there may be some protection for those who opt back in within 5 years of opting out) MUST rejoin immediately. If the cost of the contributions is a problem then they should be reminded that from April there will be an option to pay half their normal contribution rate for half the pension. They should approach their employer's pension department and ensure that the forms to rejoin have been returned and received by the pensions department before the end of this month. If they are not actively contributing to the scheme then any benefits they earned before they opted out, that fall outside the proposed five year window protection to opt back in, will go up in line with prices (currently Consumer Price Index) not earnings.

Anyone in the LGPS (England and Wales) thinking of paying Additional Voluntary Contributions to maximise tax free lump sum payment when they retire (so they don't have to exchange so much of their pension for cash at the relatively poor exchange rate of £12 cash £1 pension) should elect to pay the contributions BEFORE April 2014. Members should also ensure that the election form is in the hands of their employer or their Pension Fund Administering Authority before 1 April 2014.

Ian Upton - Education Co-ordinator

My priority for this year is to ensure we have active Stewards trained in areas where they can put their skills into practice. I am keen to ensure that all Stewards receive basic training in their role as soon as possible after their election.

If you feel you need training in an area where skills are lacking, or if you need to be re-accredited, contact me via the Branch Office on 0151- 643 7007 or by e-mail at unison@wirralunison.co.uk


UNISON's membership is made up of individuals from all walks of life and all parts of the world. Every one of them is entitled to be treated with fairness, dignity, and respect. Read more>>


UNISON is working to defend good pension schemes and improve and promote affordable, decent pensions for all our members, wherever you work. Read more>>


UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis told hundreds of thousands of union marchers in Hyde Park at the March for the Alternative on 26 March: "Today is one day. Today is a magnificent day. Tomorrow we march on." Read more>>
eFocus newsletter

Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional Valid CSS!