UNISONScotland www
Scotland's biggest public service union Join UNISON
Click here
Home News About us Join Us Contacts Help Resources Learning Links UNISON UK


Lifelong Learning

Role of a Union Learning Rep

  Janette McQuiston

Janette McQuiston is a Union Learning Rep for UNISON in the Highland Healthcare Branch in Inverness


... in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland

The Union Learning Rep is the promoter of Lifelong Learning in the workplace. Your task is to ensure that members are aware of the opportunities that workplace learning can bring.

Your role is enshrined in legislation and time off from work to train and carry out your duties is your right.

Initial training is provided over 3 days. Your role is to talk with colleagues about training and education.

Other work includes:

  • Helping to identify and highlight the learning needs of people in their workplace
  • Encouraging colleagues to take up courses and supporting them while they are learning
  • Working with UNISON branch officers especially the branch education officer to promote lifelong learning opportunities

The Learning @ Work initiative is government sponsored and funding is administered, in Scotland, via the Scottish Trades Union Congress.

The concept of L@W is a win/win/win situation.

  • Employers win through gaining a more confident and motivated staff.
  • Unions win through having the opportunity to engage with members and using L@W as a recruitment tool
  • The individual Learner wins through having training opportunities

Unions have negotiated a Learning Agreement and Charter with Highland Council and with NHS Highland setting out how workers and management will co operate to introduce a culture of learning in the workplace.

These are available for you to refer to - if you would like a copy just contact the people whose details are at the end of this document.

Ongoing support is always available, not just at UNISON branch level but also at regional level from Fieldworkers and Area / Local Organisers - contact details are given at the end of this document.

The L@W initiative has changed this and a great many of our members are benefiting. The role of the Union Learning Rep is the key to the future success of L@W and your assistance will be greatly valued.

At present UNISON also has a fieldworker for Lifelong Learning, Philippa Clark. whose job it is to support you - the ULR.Philippa can be contacted on p.clark@unison.co.uk and 01463 723952

Other great resources are available from the Scottish TUC Highlands and Islands Development Officer, Eleanor Adam, who can be contacted on 01463 248905 and EAdam@stuc.org.uk

Being a ULR is a rewarding job - it can literally change people's lives. Your involvement is appreciated by UNISON and will also be valued by the colleagues you assist.

Top of Page