Membership growth at HMP Altcourse

For a number of years there has been only two UCU members at HMP Altcourse and no reps or contacts.  Now we have twenty one.  How did this happen?

The change started less than 12 months ago when new members joined who were keen to get involved.  UCU’s Novus prison branch chair, Brian, visited the prison to meet members and potential members.  He let them know what UCU was doing to tackle the concerns of members and explained why it was important to join.

Soon afterwards a prison education rep, Andrew, was elected along with a health and safety rep Neil.  As well as two new reps, another member, Rebecca, became a very active contact and has recruited lots of new members.

A recent meeting at HMP Altcourse was very well attended – fifteen members of staff were present.  Various local issues were discussed, especially health and safety, as well as UCU national campaigns and the reps went away with several issues to address.  The meeting was open to anyone considering joining and three people joined after the meeting.

This shows that we can significantly increase our membership levels – and it is mainly done by talking to your colleagues.

Ronnie Kershaw
UCU national organiser