Welcome to the website of the Community, Youth and Playworkers in Unite! Formerly the Community and Youth Workers’ Union (CYWU) and now part of Unite the union, the biggest trade union in Europe. As part of the Community, Youth Workers and Not for Profit Sector, our members are either working or training to work with children, young people and communities in statutory or voluntary settings. This website offers access to information for both members and non members and if there is anything you would like to see here please contact us.
CYWU News Bulletins
Defend Play & Youth Workers London Campaign Launch – 7 April 2015
Playgrounds, youth centres, and community services have been attacked since 2010. The three main political parties have pledged more cuts after the General Election in May. That means less staff, less hours, less pay, or simply the sudden closure of more valued community spaces.
In London, we want to get organised to stop this happening. If you're a youth worker, a playworker, a parent, or someone who uses one of these services, please come along to our campaign launch on Tuesday 7th April (exactly one month before the General Election).
Why we need to get organised: an example
In 2012, Wandsworth Council decided to close Battersea Park Adventure Playground, in what they claimed would save £386,000. Considering the low maintenance costs of the playground and the low wages of the three full-time staff that were sacked, it is hard to know how they arrived at £386,000.
Despite protests organised by local mothers and children, the council went ahead with their plans. At the time, they said the playground would be closed, refurbished, and re-opened as an unsupervised space.
What the council actually did in 2014 was re-open the playground but divided in two: one half free and the other an exclusive, privately-run service that costs £20 per child. Before the playground had been an open community service, where teenagers (who often lack safe, constructive spaces in cities) built long-term relationships with staff and their peers, and felt ownership over the environment.
Such spaces are rare in London. Now, the company Go Ape! have opened a private (and no doubt profitable) 'attraction', designed for the once-a-year enjoyment of those who can afford it. This has nothing to do with the community values that underpinned adventure playgrounds when they first sprang up on derelict land in the 1970s.
If we want to stop this happening to other playgrounds and youth centres, we need to strengthen links between workers, parents, and children across London. We need to raise awareness about the importance of these services and the threats they face. We need to support each others local battles. We need to be ready for the next time they try to cut.
London Playworkers and Youth workers Campaign Launch is supported by Unite the Union.
If you're a playworker, a child, a mum, a dad, a cousin, a youth worker, or your just concerned about cuts to youth services, please come to meeting on:
Tuesday 7th April from 1830 - 2030
There will be snacks, childcare, and ***guest speakers***
Unite the Union
128 Theobalds Road
JNC Staff Side
A staff side meeting was held yesterday and it was agreed to ballot members on the employers offer with a recommendation to accept as the best achievable by negotiation. We will be allowing a six week period for constituent unions to conduct their consultation.
To read the Emplyers Offer (PDF), click here
To read the Employers side response to Staff, click here
Campaign for a statutory youth service
ChooseYouth are lobbying Ed Miliband to pledge for a statutory youth service in Labour’s manifesto for 2015. We need to promote the petition as widely as possible to ensure that our collective voice is listened to. You can sign the petition here and promote it via Thunderclap by following this link.
Help us keep in touch by letting us have your email address or any membership amendments by sending an email message using this link.
For contact details of your local branch please contact your local Unite Office the details can be obtained from the Unite website, www.unitetheunion.org
Choose Youth Manifesto
Our Vision for A New Youth Service has been published by Choose Youth and full details are available on their website.
Valuing Youth Work
Further research has been published by the Local Government Association and the National Youth Agency. Valuing Youth Work contains case studies of local authority-funded projects in Birmingham, Devon, Hartlepool, Hounslow, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Rotherham and the Wirral. Each example shows how organisations and councils can work together to provide services covering health, citizenship, participation, and training and education, and the positive impacts such work has on young people.
Benefits of Youth Work - In conjunction with LLUK and Unite and researched by staff at the National Youth Agency this study could not be better timed. The Benefits of Youth Work sets out in simple terms the reasons why our work is important, why it is cost effective and how it makes a real difference to young people`s lives.Ideal for councillors, policy makers and their colleagues within multi disciplinary teams. Hard copies of this document can be obtained for postage and packaging costs in advance from Kerry Jenkins
Other News and Information
Cuts to playwork services
The preliminary findings from the survey looking at the impact of cuts has been analysed and a report on this can be found in the January edition of Rapport.
For more information on playwork in Unite contact Chris Martin, Playwork Convenor, at: Chris.Martin@unitetheunion.org
News from Around the Branches
All Branches are facing huge threats to youth services across the nations. Please let us know what is happening in your area so that we can keep an overall view of the cuts and of the fight that is needed.
Oxfordshire Branch - watch campaign highlights here.
Become a fan of Choose Youth on Facebook
Join the Choose Youth community by liking the page. The page will be used to keep you up to date with all the latest news from the Chooseyouth campaign as well as other campaigns and developments. You can add photos and postings of your own and contribute to the discussion in the forums. To get started, just click "Like" on the top of the page and their postings will appear in your newsfeed.
Unite the Union website
Visit the Unite the Union website and see what Europe’s biggest union is doing to support it’s members. The website has a dedicated section for the Community, Youth Workers and Not for Profit Industrial Sector and direct links to this website.
Trade Union News