About Us

Welcome to the website of the North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) Branch of UNISON. UNISON is by far the biggest union in NWAS and is the United Kingdom’s largest union with more than 1.4 million members.

This site has been created to give you, our members as much information as possible and to allow for better communication between members and their representatives of which we have more than any other union. The Pandemic has made it more difficult for us to meet up face to face with our members so we have now set up the facility to have one to one or group video conference calls to ensure we maximise the safety for everyone. Of course, we are more than happy to meet up face to face when it is safe to do so.

All of your representatives work for NWAS and they do same job as you so anything that affects you also affects them in exactly the same way. All of our stewards are ERA accredited so you can be confident that they know what they are doing, and they have to renew this accreditation every 5 years.

We are proud to represent over 4000 members that includes frontline ambulance staff including the Patient Transport Service, Emergency Operations Centres and 111, Workshop Staff and Corporate members.

Our continuing growth each year is a clear demonstration of the service that we provide to our members and we continually strive to improve on this day by day. If you have any ideas to improve our site, please contact us and let us know.

Briefings

To see our latest NWAS UNISON member briefings please click here.

Please see Branch Secretary's blog for important news on NHS Pensions.

Branch Secretary's Blog

DHSC moves to end Covid sick pay / special leave provisions (England)

The DHSC has moved to end the temporary provisions it put in place at the beginning of the pandemic for:

  • Covid sick pay ie paid as if at work and disregarded for absence management/triggers

  • Covid special leave for periods of self-isolation

From 7 July 2022:

  • Staff will have new episodes of Covid sickness treated like other sickness in line with normal Handbook provisions.

  • Periods where staff are required to stay away from the workplace for Covid infection control purposes will no longer be recorded as Covid special leave.

  • Staff who are already off work on Covid sick pay on 7 July will be informed they will revert to standard Handbook provisions from 1 September onwards if they are still off by then

The DHSC is asking employers to meet with all staff already off on Covid sick pay starting from 7 July, with meetings to be completed by 3 August. This is to discuss what the changes will mean for individuals. The DHSC has also asked that from 4 August employers give these staff four week’s formal notice of the change that will take effect on 1 September.

The DHSC has confirmed that all absence treated as Covid sick pay/leave continues not to count against contractual sick pay entitlement or for absence management policies/ triggers.

UNISON is working within the Staff Council to put implementation guidance out as soon as possible for local employers and staff sides on supporting staff through this change and after.

Our priority areas for the guidance include:

  • Ensuring clarity that from 7 July staff required to stay away from work for infection control will continue to be supported to do so – either through enabling them to work remotely or through ‘authorised absence’ (ie on full pay and not counted as sickness).

  • Spelling out that for staff reverting to Handbook sickness provisions the clock is re-set and 1 September is effectively treated as absence day 1.

  • Signposting the range of Handbook provisions that can support staff including those suffering from long Covid or delayed operations eg injury allowance, discretions to extend sick pay, extended phased returns.

  • Ensuring that patterns of Covid infection among staff continue to be recorded and monitored