Around 600 women attended the Unison union’s women’s conference in Brighton last week.
The main focus of the conference was on highlighting how women, particularly black and LGBT women, are being disproportionately affected by the Tory cuts.
Discussions around pensions saw rank and file activists questioning why Unison nationally had split from other unions to accept the government’s “heads of agreement” terms.
Women also asked why further strikes were not being called, given the speed of the implementation of cuts to local government and the health service.
The response from the national committee was that Unison’s membership density was too low to take on the government.
It was clear that people were disappointed by the lack of will from Unison’s leadership to lead a fightback. But members were still keen to discuss the effects of the cuts on women, and how best to fight them