Welcome to UNISON Wakefield MDC

The Wakefield District Branch of UNISON has approximately 9,000 members and whilst the majority of those members are organised across WMDC we also have members organised amongst over 80 other employers.

These members also deliver key services to the public, some of these members are from the Meat Hygiene Service, Colleges, Probation, West Yorkshire Joint Services, the Voluntary Sector, Housing Associations, the caring fields, Wakefield & District Housing, car parks and areas of education other than the LEA to name but a few.

The Kinsley 3

Kinsley 3


School Cleaners taking indefinite strike for fairness (28/09/16)

Three academy school cleaners who’s council jobs were privatised are taking indefinite strike action after bosses slashed their pay to the minimum wage.  The cleaners (the Kinsley 3) commenced indefinite strike action on 6 September.

The staff work at Kinsley Academy Primary near Wakefield are members of Wakefield District UNISON.  They were employed by Wakefield Council before academy bosses transferred their jobs to contractor C&D cleaning Series in April.  Kinsley Primary Academy is run by Wakefield City Academies Trust (WCAT).

The privateer cut their pay by 65p per hour to the statutory minimum wage of £7.20 per hour and also abolished sick pay.

After being challenged on the issue by UNISON, the firms head of human resources Nick Thorpe responded with an offensive letter dismissing UNISON’s approach.  He wrote:  “We do not require your input, opinion or indeed assistance in any shape or form, therefore I do not expect to hear from you again.”

UNISON Branch Development Officer Sharon Simpson had written to the firm reminding bosses of worker’s writes under transfer of undertakings – protection of employment (TUPE) legislation.

Mr Thorpe wrote: “We do not recognise you or your organisation and subsequently we will not be entering into any form of dialogue with you in relation to our employees.”

Referring to UNISON’s determination to continue representing workers who’s jobs were transferred to the private sector, he said “I understand from the above the impact for you as an organisation when members realise that we are no longer living in the 1980’s and they question the actual value of union membership when you have no say, power or influence over their employer”.

“I also understand that by your very nature you make your living justifying your means out of recalcitrant behaviour and churlish threats, I would therefore politely remind you that sweeping statements and allegations based purely on conjecture [sic] will be dealt with accordingly”

UNISON is in dispute with the firm and is taking the case to an employment tribunal.

UNISON organiser Robin Symonds said the company’s emails were “very insightful.”  The union will take the cleaners case to the employment tribunal, their strike runs indefinitely.

We do not believe C&D Cleaning are fit to hold any school cleaning contracts due to the way they treat their employees.

We call upon the WCAT Board to relieve C&D Cleaning of the contract and take the cleaning contract in-house or award it to a reasonable employer.

We ask that as many members as possible sign the our petition demanding that WCAT take action to resolve this dispute.  The petition can be found by following this link:


Anyone wishing to send any messages of support of financial contributions to support the members through their strike action can send them directly to the branch office.


News headlines

Can you afford to lose £50 a Week in Tax Credits? (30/06/16)

Universal Credit usually pays less than Tax Credits. About a million people who are entitled to Tax Credits aren’t claiming. That’s why UNISON has teamed up with entitledto Ltd to deliver the UNISON Tax Credit (Take Up) Calculator to help people claim Tax Credits before Universal Credit arrives locally.

Tax Credits

On 11 April 2016 the help people get with Universal Credit is being cut. 80,000 people in work will be hit immediately. Single parents, for example, lose over £50/week. The roll-out of the new Universal Credit software starts in May and will be completed by 2018. Once it arrives locally you won’t be able to apply for Tax Credits.

Universal Credit usually pays less than Tax Credits. The government says no-one who moves from Tax Credits to Universal Credit will be worse off. That means if you sign up for Tax Credits before the change, the amount of money you get will stay protected when you move over to UC, so long as your circumstances don’t change. This could be worth as much as an extra £50 a week for some people and over 5 years as much as £14,000.

Find out more here...


Latest newsletter published (25/04/16)
Government withdraws plan to stop check-off for subs payment (20/04/16)

The government has withdrawn plans to ban public service workers from having their union subs deducted from their wages.

As the House of Lords started its report stage debate on the Trade Union Bill last night, Cabinet Office minister Lord Bridges confirmed that the government was withdrawing the plans to end check-off in the public sector and civil service.

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis, who led the extensive lobbying campaign in both the House of Lords and the Commons, welcomed the move, saying the bill is still flawed, but today’s move “is a real improvement”.

He added: “I’m really proud of UNISON and the campaign we’ve run on check-off: persistence and focus paid off.”

Commenting on the announcement last night, Mr Prentis said: “There’s much that’s wrong with the Trade Union Bill, but banning unions from using the check-off system to collect membership fees from employees in the public sector was among the most mean-spirited of all its proposals.

Young woman holds up banner against the Trade Union Bill

UNISON: campaigning against the bill

“But thanks to a good deal of union campaigning behind the scenes, UNISON and the TUC have built an effective coalition in the Lords that persuaded the government a ban would be both unjustified and unnecessary.

“Now at least UNISON can concentrate on campaigning to protect public sector employees at work and the services they deliver, safe in the knowledge that it will not have to spend the next year running around workplaces with direct debit forms for fear of losing much of its income.

“Employers and unions across the public sector will have breathed a collective sigh of relief at today’s news that there has been a sensible change of heart in Westminster.

“And there’s no cost to the public purse as a result of this decision.”


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