UNISON reaffirms its commitment to ending violence against women and girls

UNISON is the largest organisation for women in the UK.

Motions at UNISON’s national delegate conference have reaffirmed the union’s commitment to ending violence against women and girls.

Delegates on the conference floor in Brighton voted for the union to campaigning for more to be done to reinforce the UK’s commitment Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

Sharon Foster moved the motion on behalf of the National Women’s Committee highlighting that CEDAW was first ratified in 1986, but that a report in 2019 concluded that the UK is still not compliant with the convention.

The motion ensures the union has an obligation to develop a campaign for the implementation of CEDAW into domestic legislation.

Conference then heard Motion 83 which considered a report into workplace culture at Charing Cross Police Station published in February.

The motion was powerfully moved by Bedfordshire Police branch and notes WhatsApp messages exchanged between colleagues at the station.

In one message that was highlighted by a speaker in favour of the motion an officer was found to be telling a female colleague “I would happily rape you… if I was single… if I was single I would happily chloroform you.”

An inspirational speech from councillor Lola Oyewusi followed which saw conference standing and stamping their feet in support of the motion. It was carried unanimously.

National delegate conference also backed Motion 44 which sought to accredit UNISON to White Ribbon UK, the leading charity that engages with men and boys to make a stand to end gender-based violence.

Follow along with conference updates on Twitter using the #uNDC22 hashtag.