Unison’s Cost of Living campaign launch


Dear colleagues,
Cost of Living

UNISON’s Cost of Living Campaign launches next week. As part of it, UNISON Welfare are launching the Energy Support Fund to help members with rising fuel costs. Phase 1 will open for applications (via the UNISON website) at 11am on 5 October. Phase 1 will be closed once the first 2000 applications have been received. The Energy Support Fund will be a one-off payment of £200.

To be eligible for phase 1 of the fund, members must meet the following criteria:

  • Must have 4 weeks of up-to-date membership as of 5 October.
  • Must not have received a main grant since March 2022.
  • Must not have more than £1,000 in savings or rolling bank balance.
  • Must not have received more than £750 worth of grants if applying within first year of membership.
  • Net household income of no more than £30k/year (£2,500/month).
  • Monthly housing costs (made up of mortgage/rent plus any service charge & ground rent) make up at least 1/3 of net household income.
  • Not in receipt of any means-tested benefits (excluding Child Benefit).

Click here for more details.

UNISON Welfare is calling on all activists to continue to encourage their branches to donate to the fund; and if you know of members who meet the eligibility criteria and are struggling with their energy bills, please let them know about the fund and how to apply.

We anticipate a very high level of demand. Please be advised that there will be a second phase of this fund which will launch in November; this phase will target members on low incomes and in receipt of means-tested benefits.

Secure and Engaging Ways to introduce members into debt support

At UNISON Debtline we understand how overwhelming being in debt can be, and how the first steps into support can sometimes be the hardest.  That’s why we have created a simply way for Branch Welfare Officers to refer someone to our debt service and support someone in making the first step.

Our Secure Referral Hub provides each region unique access to provide information about the member who needs support with debt advice.   Each referral takes less than a minute to complete meaning you can spend more time on supporting members and less time filling in complex forms.  A few seconds of your time is all it takes to change a life and provide support.

To find out more, get in touch with your regional welfare contact and join us on a regional branch update to learn more about the UNISON Debtline and see how simple a referral is to make.

Financial Wellbeing Fortnight

Meanwhile, the UNISON College is running a Financial Wellbeing College from 17 to 28 October. They’re running sessions designed to offer support and guidance during the difficult times ahead. More information on the sessions and how to get involved can be found here: Financial Wellbeing Fortnight | UNISON Learning and Organising

All the best from the UNISON Welfare team.