About us


Who are we?

UNISON is Britain’s and Europe’s biggest public sector union with more than 1.3 million members – around 150,000 of those in Scotland. See the UNISON UK site ‘Essential Information‘ pages for more details about our membership, policies, priorities and objectives.

Democracy and structures

  • Scotland is one of 12 UNISON Regions but also has some special arrangements to reflect devolution and Scotland’s unique political, legal and media context. The regions can be seen here.


UNISON is built on equality. Click here for self organised groups.

Political Fund

Details of UNISON’s unique political fund are here with general lobbying and political work in the General Political Fund here and the Scottish Labour Link here.


All you need to know about UNISON’s elections – UK election news and details here – Scotland elections details here


UNISON members work in all areas of public services in Local Government, Health Services, Further and Higher Education, utilities like Gas, Electricity and Water, Transport, Police Civilians and in the voluntary and related sectors.

Members vote directly by postal ballot for the General Secretary and National Executive. In the rare event that industrial action is called for, that also requires a postal ballot. They elect stewards and branch officers locally at meetings or by ballot.

UNISON members also qualify for a range of legal and financial benefits.


Every member is allocated to a branch. Through the branch structures, they elect stewards and branch officers and delegates to, eg Scottish Council.

Branches are usually based on employers or groups of employers, eg City of Edinburgh Branch which covers those employed by City of Edinburgh Council but also over one hundred other related and voluntary sector employers.

Members are advised of the name of their branch secretary on joining UNISON.

UNISON Scottish Council

Comprises delegates from all Scottish branches and meets three times a year to elect officers, committees, delegations etc and set policies on general matters. Oversees the work of Scottish Committees. Pay and conditions issues specific to any particular service are dealt with by the Service Groups.

UNISON Scottish Committee

Comprises elected members from Scottish Council, Service Group delegates and Self Organised Group delegates. Has the key policy and strategy role between Scottish Council meetings.