Welcome to Greenwich UNISON

Heatwave Advice


Whilst many will be enjoying the hot weather, working in the heat can present issues.

Whilst there is no maximum temperature that we can work in the employer should ensure that the workplace is of a reasonable temperature. Employers may supply fans or air conditioning units and should look at any risks to staff who may be vulnerable due to the heat.


Drinking water must be provided, where water is not able to be obtained by the mains supply (tap) you employer must provide refillable water containers and if necessary bottled water.


For those who work outside exposed to the heat source (sun)  i.e. street cleaning you employer may provide you with sun cream, PPE clothing that is breathable (allowing the body to keep cool), hats and bottled water. It may be advisable to take extra breaks in the shade to help the body cool down. Water should be sipped regularly to stop dehydration.


The heatwave we currently experiencing can be a risk to health particular to children and the elderly so below are signs and symptoms of heat stress and heat stroke that members need to be aware of. If you think you or your colleagues are suffering from heat stress/stoke you need to notify your employer and seek medical treatment if necessary.


If you have any concerns about your working conditions please contact either your workplace rep or the branch (020 8921 5226) where a branch officer will be able to advise you and if needed contact the employer.


The signs of heat exhaustion include:

  • headache
  • dizziness and confusion
  • loss of appetite and feeling sick
  • excessive sweating and pale, clammy skin
  • cramps in the arms, legs and stomach
  • fast breathing or pulse
  • temperature of 38C or above
  • intense thirst

The symptoms are often the same in adults and children, although children may become floppy and sleepy.

If someone is showing signs of heat exhaustion they need to be cooled down.


Things you can do to cool someone down:


Follow these 4 steps:

  1. Move them to a cool place.
  2. Get them to lie down and raise their feet slightly.
  3. Get them to drink plenty of water. Sports or rehydration drinks are OK.
  4. Cool their skin – spray or sponge them with cool water and fan them. Cold packs around the armpits or neck are good too.

Stay with them until they are better.

They should start to cool down and feel better within 30 minutes.

Call 999 if the person:


  • is no better after 30 minutes
  • feels hot and dry
  • is not sweating even though they are too hot
  • has a temperature that's risen to 40C or above
  • has rapid or shortness of breath
  • is confused
  • has a fit (seizure)
  • loses consciousness
  • is unresponsive

These can be signs of heat stroke.


While you wait for help, keep giving first aid and put them in the recovery position if they lose consciousness.


     Taken from NSH website www.nhs.uk/conditions/heat-exhaustion-heatstroke/


UNISON's 25th Birthday


It is 25 years since 3 unions joined together to make UNISON, the country’s largest Public Sector Union.


To celebrate this event on Tuesday 14th August Greenwich UNISON are organising a FREE day trip to Margate for our members and their Children.

We will be picking up from Eltham and Woolwich around 9 and leaving Margate about 5.30.


While the day out is free, we will ask for a £10 deposit per person/family group to secure your place/places.


We will give this back to you on the Day.


For more details/ to book a place, please phone the Branch on 020 8921 5226 or email unison@royalgreenwich.gov.uk


Places are limited so get back to us ASAP


UNISON to make sure you are paid when RBG requires you to get to work!


Greenwich Unison alongside fellow union Unite, have been in discussion with management over the start time of RBG staff, RBG are under the false impression that as an your employer they can ask you to start work 15 minutes before your contractual start time and not pay you!


Please see flyer below for more info.

15 min start time news letter.docx
Microsoft Word document [311.2 KB]

RBG Overtime

We think that the Council have incorrectly paid members overtime since at least 2008.


If you are in a Scale 1-6 post (not SO1 or above) and have been paid overtime at any point over the last 6 years and want Unison to follow this up you need to complete a Case Form.


You can download one using the link below.


Alternatively, you can phone the office on 020 8921 5226 and we will post one out to you.

Overtime Claim form.docx
Microsoft Word document [212.2 KB]

The Tories 'Magic Service Tree'

(and how Greenwich fall for it)


Much has been made over the last few weeks by the Tories about the 'Magic Money Tree' (the one which they shook to find £1.5bn to buy off the DUP to stay in power). However the Government believe in another Magic Tree, they think that if you cut spending, magically services will still happen.


In Local Government, spending has been cut by 40%, this has been achieved by actually cutting services, by reducing our members wages relative to prices and, more insidiously by using outsourcing to reduce the pay and conditions of our members.


A perfect example of this is the situation our members face at Home Start Greenwich who run Children's Centres for the Borough in parts of Greenwich. The contracts were given to other providers such as Home Start in 2014 because of government cuts in funding.


The existing staff were told that their terms and conditions would be protected, including their right to a Local Government Pension. Now 3 years done the line, the Royal Borough of Greenwich is cutting the funding to Home Start and magically expecting Home Start to provide more services with less money. The result is that Home Start are saying that the only way this can be done is to strip their staff of their Local Government Pension and replace it with an inferior one which costs them less and will result in a lower Pension for our members when they retire.


Prompt Action by our Branch has put a stop to this for the time being, but the time has come for our Labour controlled Borough to stop this outsourcing nonsense. They are implementing the Tories agenda by pretending that outsourcing services magically maintains services, the only way services continue is because people get paid less and have worse terms and conditions.


The end result of this nonsense is that you can't get enough staff to deliver the services, those that remain are over worked, demoralised and ultimately less efficient, not more, and as far as the whole economy is concerned there are a lot more low paid workers which means less economic activity, lower tax revenues and more cuts. 


Greenwich Unison have had enough of this nonsense and if you have too then get more involved with us campaigning for well paid staff working for the Borough providing high quality services to our local residents.

Schools Funding


 New National Schools Funding Formular will rob London's children of essential funding for their education and poses a massive threat to School Support Staff jobs.



Find out more about Schools Funding Cuts and what you can do to help stop them HERE


or have a look at our face book page;


Greenwich Unison on Facebook


Get Trained!

Latest Unison Courses available


Advice, support and help when you need it at work

We have a network of trained local advisors and negotiators who will provide you with help at work when you need it most, as well as professional legal advisors and experts when appropriate.


Branch Officer Contact Details:


All Greenwich UNISON 7 Branch Officers have been issued with a UNISON mobile and dedicated email address that is synced to their mobile to improve contact with members.  If you are unsure who your workplace rep is, please review the list below to determine which Branch officer covers your area.  They will either deal with your issue on your behalf or refer you to a local workplace UNISON rep.  Please contact them directly, or alternatively contact the office 0208 921 5226.


See below for full details:


Simon Steptoe

Branch Secretary

07879 990318 simon@greenwichunison.org.uk


Tracey Higgins

Assistant Branch Secretary Private Sector and representation for members working for GS+ and GSS

07881 384397 tracey@greenwichunison.org.uk


Jay Lowman

Assistant Branch Secretary Royal Borough of Greenwich

07879 990269 jay@greenwichunison.org.uk


Clara Mason

Assistant Branch Secretary Schools and Colleges

07818 518934 clara@greenwichunison.org.uk


Jamie Breen

Birchmere Convenor

07881 384409 jamie@greenwichunison.org.uk


Linda Delieu

Recruitment and Retention Officer

Contact for members working in the Private Sector, such as Private Care Homes and Voluntary Sector Organisations

07824 532966  linda@greenwichunison.org.uk


Kevin Sullivan

Birchmere contact morning waste shift contact

07818 517470




Pauline Revell-Bowles

Office Administrator and ERA accredited Rep

020 8921 5226 unison@royalgreenwich.gov.uk

Greenwich UNISON
Riverside House West
Woolwich High Street
London SE18 6DN


If you need UNISON help or information fast and can’t contact your union rep or branch, UNISONdirect can help.


Helpline open until midnight

0800 0 857 857

Lines are open from 6am to midnight on Monday to Friday and 9am to 4pm on Saturday. Outside these times, you can leave an answerphone message or fill in the online form and UNISONdirect will call you back.

We can also be contact by textphone on 0800 0 967 968 (freephone).

We are located at:


1st Floor

Riverside House West

Woolwich High Street 


SE18 6DN

Contact us today!

If you have any queries or wish to make an appointment, please contact us:


020 8921 5226


or write to;



Get social with us.

Print Print | Sitemap
© WebAdmin