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Scottish Black Members Black Members



Scottish Black Members Committee
Report to the Scottish Committee

Oct/Nov 2007

The Scottish Black Members Committee continues to implement two main objectives.

  1. To raise a positive profile of the Committee within UNISON
  2. To increase involvement of Black members, within Scottish UNISON

1. National Black Member's Conference

  • The 2008 National Black Members' Conference is to be held on 11-13 January 2008 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Glasgow National. SBMC is grateful to the Scottish Region for warmly responding to our call for support and practical help in organising civic reception and the social event, at the conference.
  • SBMC once again asks the Scottish branches for their support, by encouraging their black delegates to attend the conference.
  • The last Black Members Conference took place in Liverpool from 19 to 21 January 2007.
  • SBMC is all praise for UNISON Scotland and its branches for their commitment to the effective participation of black members at National and Regional level.
  • At the conference, Scottish delegates will be moving four motions. As agreed in it committee meeting, the SBMC will be moving two motions. And one motion each will be moved by the delegates from Fife LG and Perth and Kinross.
  1. Black Members Training Weekend
  • UNISON Black Members Training Weekend have been organised following consultations with black members regarding their training needs.
  • The Scottish Learning & Organising Committee is fully commitment to support SBMC training weekend.
  • The training weekend took place as planned in Edinburgh, on 21, 22, 23 September 2007. As 62% among of those who attended the training were new black members, it would be fair to say that the weekend marked another year of "Success".
  • The SBMC thank Scottish branches for their on going support. In particular, Lothian Health, City of Edinburgh Branch and Fife LG branch for sending new black members to the SBMC training weekend.
  1. STUC BM Conference 2007
  • The 11th STUC Black Workers conference took place in Perth on 20/21 October 2007. UNISON delegate comprised 14 strong members, led by Sofi Taylor NEC).
  • At the conference all UNISON candidates were elected unopposed. Among the delegates Tamara Mhura and David Olwa were elected to STUC BW Committee, and Ismail Donmez was elected to attend STUC Conference 2008.
  • There were 47 delegates and one observer who attended the conference. In all 17 motions were moved (including composites). UNISON delegates actively debated the motions. Among the UNISON delegates Patricia Agu, Jerome Rueda and Zia Hussain were first time speakers.
  1. Anti BNP activities: 
  • Produced 6 page special Anti- BNP NEWSLETTER, to reinforce the message: "not to cast vote for BNP" in May 2007 elections.
  • Active Anti-BNP campaigning, distribution of leaflets, by hand and electronically among black members.
  • Ravi, Bernard and Hamid manned the Unison Stall at "Allah Made Me Funny", an anti racism event which took place in Glasgow.
  1. Development of Black Self-Organising Groups in Scottish Branches:
  • This year SBMC set up a target for itself to form at least one SOG in a Scottish Branch. SBMC has achieved this target.
  • A black self organising group at NHS Lothian Health Branch has been shaped up.
  • It is the first SOG of its kind in NHS Scottish Branches.
  • This SOG had its first meeting on 30 June 2007 and turn out was very good.
  • The chair SBMC congratulates the NHS Lothian branch for its exceptional on- going support and praised the efforts of the branch's black equality officers (David Okalo Olwa and Lui Giacomello), for their hard work in creation of the SOG.
  • Marie Macrae (Equality Officer Fife LG branch) worked hard in setting up a black member's self-organisation group in her branch. She is actively supported by Ismail Donmez, Secretary SBMC. Also Sofi Taylor equally deserves praise in taking an active role, to shape a black SOG at Glasgow Health branch.
  1. Nation LG and Water Conference 2007:
  • The National Black Members Committee elected Ismail Donmez and Ravi Nathan as their delegates to the National LG conference and National Water Conference respectively. Both elected delegates are active members of Scottish Black Members Committee.
  • Ravi spoke in support of the motion on Equalities at the National Water Conference and Ismail, despite being a first time speaker, spoke well in support of the NBMC motion on Equalities, at the National Local Government Conference.
  1. Scotland United Against Terror has organised a rally in Glasgow on Saturday 7 July
  • SBMC members took part in the "Scottish United against Terror" rally in Glasgow on Saturday 7 July 2007. This was to show that SBMC totally and utterly denounces terrorism anywhere and in all forms.
  1. St Andrew's Day March
  • SBMC's presence at the St Andrews Day March 2006 received good media coverage. SBMC aims to build on its success, by strongly participating in St Andrew's Day March 2007. 
  1. SBMC AGM 2007:
  • Scottish Black Members AGM is scheduled to take place on 17 November 2007 at Board Room, Royal Victoria Hospital Edinburgh.
  • The AGM papers have reached Scottish Branches and these papers can also be downloaded from our UNISON Scotland website. SBMC once again seek support from Scottish Branches, and would be grateful if they could send as many delegates as possible, to send their black members to attend the AGM.

To ensure accountability; SBMC aims to present regular reports on its activities to the future NBMC, Scottish Committee and Scottish Council meetings.

Ismail Donmez,

Secretary Scottish Black Members Committee

24 October 2007