Activate Issue 2 2018

The theme running through much of this edition of Activate is ‘union building’, and how the work we’re all doing to be ‘ballot-ready’ in the pay campaign is also a key part of that bigger picture. Read on for details on what you can do to help.

Many thanks to those reps who have so far responded with case studies for our Representing Members column. This month we’re featuring a rep who helped a disabled member reach an agreement over sickness absence trigger points. And thanks to some of our fantastic Union Learning Reps, we’ve got a series of Q&As about what their role involves and why it’s an excellent recruitment tool.

Finally, your feedback informs our plans – please respond to our surveys on Union Advocates and maximising ballot turnouts, take part in our upcoming pay campaign webinars, and contact us about what kind of training you’d like the PCS Academy to offer.

In this edition:

Getting ballot-ready on pay comes first
Branches getting ‘ballot ready’ for a potential industrial action vote over pay is the main focus for PCS in the coming weeks and months. Read more

How to….get the vote out in a ballot
A new guide to getting the vote out during industrial action ballots is due to be published, and reps are being asked to share their experiences. Read more

Signing up more Advocates is key to building PCS
Increasing the number of Advocates is vital for building higher participation and improving diversity among activists – and we’re aiming to have 10,000 by 2020. Read more

Life as a Union Learning Rep
Union Learning Reps (ULRs) are a valued piece of the PCS jigsaw at work, but the role is sometimes less understood than others. We talk to five ULRs about the role. Read more

Representing Members: ‘Unless you try you don’t stand a chance’
We hear how one rep went about helping a disabled member reach an agreement with an employer who wanted to reduce their sickness absence trigger points. Read more

PCS Academy: Educating and supporting reps key to building our union
PCS is reviewing how it trains reps and members in the skills they need for their union roles, with the new PCS Academy. Read more

Dealing with new data protection rules
Ahead of the introduction of the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), we answer questions reps might have about data they process. Read more

Tackling ignorance about the menopause and work
The menopause is a growing occupational health issue, with women making up almost half the workforce. Read on for useful resources and advice. Read more

Let us know what you think about this issue and send your Activate ideas to You can also view Activate online at

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