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UNISON is aware that many childcare facilities are now beginning to re-open as the Covid-19 lockdown begins to ease and more people return to their workplaces. The definition of a keyworker that can access childcare has been expanded.

UNISON is here to provide advice and representation for our members working in childcare settings who may be concerned about the health and safety of the children they care for, their colleagues and themselves.

Hundreds of ambulance workers in Northern Ireland are to receive a pay rise amounting to several thousand pounds each, following an extensive period of campaigning and negotiation by UNISON.

Members of the union voted overwhelmingly to accept the pay offer from the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service HSC Trust, which will be backdated to the beginning of 2017.  


Within the last 24 hours UNISON has been advised by Health and Social Care Trusts of a regional alert in relation to PPE Fit testing carried out for Trusts by an external company. We have been advised that some staff may have received a positive Fit test when in actual fact under HSE standards this may not have been the case.

UNISON has responded to the Department of Health Permanent Secretary in relation to the creation of a new Management Board for the Health Service. Our Regional Secretary, Patricia McKeown, has written to the Permanent Secretary (16th June) expressing serious concerns around democratic accountability and engagement with UNISON on the future of the health service.

UNISON is calling for the voice of the workforce to be heard by the Management Board. Our health and social care workers are at the frontline in dealing with Covid-19 and will take the lead in rebuilding services. 

UNISON, the largest union in the health and social care system, has met with the South Eastern Trust regarding the return of services to the Downe Hospital.

A video created by UNISON Education Organiser Caitlin NiChathail on Returning to work safely has become a must watch feature on the UNISON Northern Ireland Facebook page. The video which has been viewed by almost 3,000 people and reached over 10,000 users in two days, is fast becoming an important source of information for members who are anxious about returning to work as lockdown measures ease.

Speaking after the Education Minister Peter Weir set a target date of Monday 17 August for some pupils to return to school, the Chair of the NIC-ICTU Education Group Denise Walker ( has stated that:  “It is now abundantly and alarmingly clear that the Minister of Education has no intention of engaging in proper consultation with trade unions.

UNISON notes the publication (9th June) by the Minister of Health, Robin Swann MLA, of the Strategic Framework for Rebuilding Health and Social Care Services and the creation of a new Management Board for the health service.