COVID-19 UPDATE

UNISON City of Edinburgh branch is maintaining regular dialogue with our employers as part of the emergency response to the current pandemic.

As you will be aware things are changing almost on an hourly basis and every decision and its consequences are being fully considered. I can assure members that the health, safety, your wellbeing and that of clients (especially those identified as vulnerable) is taking priority.

Whilst these events are unprecedented it is not new for Local Government and its workforce to be called upon during national emergencies – it’s what we do best. This pandemic highlights the valuable and significant contribution you make to the lives of all sectors of our communities in particular those most vulnerable.

The council and other employers may seek volunteers from all occupational groups to assist in key and high priority areas – this is being supported by UNISON as the safest and most effective way in delivering care for those in need. I would therefore encourage those who are fit, able and willing, to respond to this call. UNISON will be issuing advice to members who volunteer to work in other areas and we will maintain close dialogue with the Council in monitoring the situation.

Whilst we understand that there is a temporary shortage in some protective equipment, I have been assured that everything possible is being done to remedy this.

Many services have now closed or due to close including schools. This in particular will add to the challenges associated with this pandemic.

If you find yourself working from home, again we will issue advice in order for you to safely do so.

National/Scottish Government and Health advice is being updated regularly please look out for the Communication Sections updates from the Council and/or this link

https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response

The branch office has been closed to visitors in order for myself, Branch Officers, Stewards and our staff to be able to respond safely to our members enquiries. Like all sectors we may find ourselves having staff and representatives working from home or self-isolating etc. I am sure you will appreciate this may cause delays in responding to you. I would ask that you contact us by telephone – 0131 558 7488 Option 2, or email  branchoffice@unison-edinburgh.org.uk or Facebook https://www.facebook.com/unisonedin

We will continue to placing regular updates on our webpage.

Thank you for the work you do, day in day out and I am sure our collective response will ensure that we will get through the challenges posed in the coming weeks and months.   Please try to stay safe and healthy by following the guidance issued.

Tom Connolly
Branch Secretary