Vote YES for the political fund

By 1 May all Unite members will receive a ballot paper to vote on our political fund. This fund is vital to the union’s political campaigning work to improve pay and conditions for workers. This is not the Labour Party affiliation, but for the political work of the union.


Unions are forced to ballot on whether they have a political fund every ten years, under the Tory’s anti trade union laws.

Please watch the video and read the important message below from Sharon Graham, our general secretary, on the political fund.

Read more about the political fund.

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Jobs in Waste and Cleansing—the promise from the picket

Following campaigning from Unite, the Council is improving how it staffs Waste and Cleansing by

  • reducing the proportion of agency staff
  • improving the recruitment process for agency staff going for full-time jobs.

This is a significant result for the workforce in Waste and Cleansing.

The promise from the picket

During last year’s strike it came to light how many agency staff were in Waste and Cleansing across the Council. Our estimate put it at around 30-40%, with some areas being staffed almost entirely by agency staff.

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Street Cleansing move to Seafield Depot

Street Cleansing workers from the Cowan’s Close and Craigmillar depots are moving to the Seafield depot by the end of the month. This has been a long process, during which members have raised numerous concerns about the new facilities and the arrangements for the move.

We have had successes in addressing concerns raised in November, yet some items remain under discussion

Below, we’ll outline the issues members have raised and the progress on them If there’s something noted as resolved that you believe is not, contact a rep in Waste and Cleansing.

We will conduct regular site inspections and continue to engage with members as they settle in to the new depot.


Cleaning and filling vehicles

Members raised concerns about the lack of facilities for cleaning vehicles and filling Hakos. Unite raised this and we now have assurance that there will be:

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COSLA pay offer 2023—vote now to reject!

Check your email for your ballot and reject this real-terms pay cut

Last week COSLA gave their pay offer for local government workers. The offer is yet another real terms pay cut—and a significant one at that as the cost of living continues to rise.

Unite have sent a consultative ballot out to all members in local government for you to have your say. This went by email today—texts and postal ballots will follow for members that don’t have an email on record.

We strongly recommend you reject this insult of an offer.

Read about the offer and the ballot below.

The offer

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International Workers’ Memorial Day 2023: Organising for health and safety

On 28 April every year, we mark International Workers’ Memorial Day (IWMD) to remember those who have died and work and mobilise to prevent this happening to others.

Health and safety is a crucial trade union activity and is something that must factor into everything we do as trade reps and members. This year, the theme for IWMD is organising for health and safety. Below we run through how your branch is currently organising for health and safety and some of the health and safety issues on the horizon.

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Vote now to fight against redundancies and privatisation

Have you voted yet?

On Monday we opened a consultative ballot for all our members across the City of Edinburgh Council to see if you would take action over the

  • loss of the ‘no compulsory redundancy’ pledge
  • threat of outsourcing and privatisation.

Both of these are potential consequences of the Lib Dem budget that was passed by the Council on 23 February. Read our post on the budget for details.

This is a consultative ballot to check if members would take action. This is not an industrial action ballot, which would lead to action. Read about different ballots.

We need to show that we will not sit back and accept cuts to jobs and services, so vote as soon as you receive your ballot. The ballot closes on 2 April.

How you receive your ballot


If we have an email on file for you, you will receive this by email.

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International Women’s Day 2023

On 8 March we celebrate International Women’s Day, when we highlight the fight for gender equality and advocate for the rights of women in the workplace, in the community and across society as a whole.

Key facts in the Council

69% of workers in the City of Edinburgh Council are women. This is 67% of local government employees and 78% of teachers.

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