The RCPod supports Heart Unions Week 2024

Trade Union
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Heart Unions Week, which is organised by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), is an annual event dedicated to celebrating the work of trade unions and showcasing the positive impact they have on workers' lives.

It’s a platform for unions to highlight their achievements, campaigns, and ongoing efforts to improve working conditions for their members and promote fairness in the workplace.

The Royal College of Podiatry is one of the smallest TUC-affiliated trade unions, but we love taking part in this week-long celebration. In preparation for the week ahead, we reached out to our extensive network of workplace representatives and tasked them with gathering insights from members about their experiences with the College as a trade union.

We received a great response, and throughout the week, we will be showcasing some of the ways in which the union has come to the aid of our members, particularly on our social media channels. Our members in Wales can also access a selection of resources in the Welsh language, issued this year by the TUC.

We have two big hopes for this year’s campaign. The first is that we hope it will remind all our members that they are a part of two organisations when they join us: a professional body, and a trade union. Secondly, we want all members to know they can come to us for podiatry-specific trade union support when they call our Employment Relations team. Whatever sector you work in, we are here to provide that help and support throughout your working life.

RCPod member:

“Many people don’t realise what unions do behind the scenes and what life would be life without them. Unions are there for our benefit to protect us and to stand together with us when needed. If you have ever needed them, you will realise just how vital they are.”

RCPod union representative:

When it got to the point that I genuinely thought I was about to be fired for a disability, I phoned my union in tears for support. I wish I’d done it sooner. They reassured me that I couldn’t be fired, disciplined or forced to quit just because I’m disabled. I’m now in a job where I’m valued for my diversity rather than punished for it. I then went on to become an Equalities Rep myself.”

Heart Unions Week always provides the College with a valuable opportunity to demonstrate how important we think it is to support and empower podiatrists across the UK and overseas through trade unionism. We are a unified voice for podiatrists, and we want to ensure they have the support, resources, and advice they need to help them in their careers.

If you need employment support, contact the College here. Alternatively, please email employmentsupport@rcpod.org.uk or call 020 7234 8620 and select option 1.

To our members in Wales

The TUC has created a set of Heart Unions Week resources in the Welsh language. It includes an A5 flyer, logos and a small selection of social media content to use to publicise the week. You can find this content on the TUC's website.