Vital Consultation for all “SSSC registered” members (Social Workers and managers, Social Care Staff, Early Years Practitioners etc.) - Hike in fees and proposals to change procedures etc.
The Scottish Social Services Council has begun a consultation on proposals to significantly increase their registration fees. This follows an earlier overhaul of their Registration and Fitness to Practise Rules.
This will affect thousands of workers across the public and voluntary sectors in Scotland – a significant portion of which are Unison members. The fees increases are (in our branch view) excessive and will potentially create a barrier to people maintaining their registration and, as a result, their employment in social services.
Their page gives the following summary of the changes:
It seems a bit of a con to mention the Tax Relief on the new fees, as it can apparently be backdated for up to 6 years (so must have also applied to the current fees). Either way, many of our members will find it cumbersome to claim.
SSSC also conducted a survey earlier this year on proposed changes to the Rules for Registration and Fitness to Practise. Both Unison Scotland and Thomsons Solicitors (who represent our members at SSSC and other professional registration bodies) submitted public responses to that consultation. The page for that consultation can be found here.
While Thomsons Solicitors' response has foccussed on the legal and technical aspects of the rules, procedures, arrangements etc. the Unison response is a little more general. Both have stressed the need for fairness and proportionality in both the processes and outcomes of SSSC proceedings. They have made reasonable and practical suggestions for improvement - while welcoming the genuine desire by SSSC to improve it's methods and provide a valuable support to social services and the professionals who work within them.
Meeting for All Dundee City Council PEYSAs in Unison:
All Local Government Members on SJC terms please remember: (particularly if you are a current member of the Local Government (or similar) pension scheme)
Due to the introduction of the NEW State Pension, all members of workplace pension schemes like the LGPS, who formerly paid 1.4% less of their pay to National insurance (a rebate for being part of a "contracted out" scheme) will have lost that reduction as of 6th April 2016.
This reduction was for pay earned between around £8000 to £40000 per year. So, those of us who are members of the LGPS will see our take home pay reduced as that 1.4% rise in NIC is applied.
For those earning above around £20000, it will wipe out the 1% pay award for 2016/2017 and appear as an overall cut in take home pay.
The State Pension changes also ruled that those of us who were "contracted out" will not qualify for the Maximum amount if retiring immediately due to the "reduced" contributions we made in the past. This may, of course, be recovered over a few more years working and paying the full NIC.
This has no impact on the quite separate rights and benefits of the LGPS itself.
Hopefully this will make some sense of the changes but you can find out more at the Tayside Pension Fund Newsletter and more general LGPS advice from the Scottish LGPS website or The Scottish Public Pensions Agency or by speaking to your local pension team.
Dundee City UNISON
Room2, Floor 3
11 Castle Street
Tel: 01382 224948
RMS No: 9999999
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING - FRIDAY 3RD MARCH 2017
You are invited to attend the UNISON Dundee City Branch Annual General Meeting. To encourage attendance, members can attend either on:
Friday 3rd March 2017 at 12.30 p.m., finishing no later than 2 p.m. in The Steps Theatre Conference Room, Central Library, Wellgate Centre, Dundee. Buffet available from 12 noon.
Friday 3rd March 2017 at 5.30 p.m., finishing no later than 7 p.m. in the Baxter Park Bowling Club, Wortley Place, Dundee. Buffet available from 5 p.m.
Following the AGM in Baxter Park Bowling Club, there will be a fundraising and entertainment event in aid of UNISON's There for you charity. Tickets cost £4 and are available by contacting the UNISON Office above.
Nominations are invited for all branch officer, steward and departmental representative positions. A nomination form is attached and should be completed and returned to the above address no later than 12 noon on 21 February 2017. If there is more than one nomination for any post an election will be held in accordance with branch rules.
Please click here for nomination form: nomination form
Current postholders should note that they must be nominated annually and a 2017 nomination form must be completed. Late nominations will be consider by the branch committee.
Motions for consideration at the AGM are also invited. These should be sent (preferably typed) to the above address no later than 12 noon on 21 February. Motions must be signed by at least two members.
The final agenda and supporting paperwork will be available at the meeting. Should you require copies in advance please contact the branch office as above.
Given the budget situation, threats to your jobs, threats to your terms and conditions and cuts to local services, this is your opportunity to find out more and to discuss the way forward.
I look forward to seeing you on 3 March 2017.
Branch Secretary Dundee City Branch