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Emergency Branch meeting at Docklands Campus at 1pm on Monday 22nd October, Room TBA.

Apologies for the short notice. Please attend if you can. Your voice counts.  Please read the Joint Unions’ statement below:

Picket line at Docklands

UCU strike October 2012

What you don’t know

Did you know that the Vice-Chancellor received a 9% increase in his already considerable salary in the last reporting period, whilst most staff have only been offered 1%? Probably not, because it’s one of those embarrassing facts that does not feature very prominently in InFocus, along with:

  • The overall response to the Staff Survey as it has been broken up and sent to Schools individually to discuss, because management don’t want you to know how unhappy staff are across UEL.
  • Management’s explanation of why, after over two years of the VC’s Transformation for Excellence Strategy, UEL is still languishing near the bottom of all the important league tables.
  • That management are changing their employment policies one-by-one (sickness absence, disciplinary, etc.) to make them more and more punitive.
  • That our Services are being picked off, one-by-one, in a series of privatisations and re-organisations that amounts to a full-scale, but undeclared, redundancy programme. First security, then catering, and at no point have they called in unions to discuss alternatives to redundancy as required under our ‘Managing Organisational Change’ Policy;
  • That the University’s Branches of UCU, Unison and Unite have all protested about a campaign of victimisation against local branch officers. A “show trial” for gross misconduct for valued colleague Tony Britton (Unite Branch Secretary) takes place at Docklands Campus on 25thOctober at 1.30. Tony is an excellent union officer who has helped many UEL staff – please help him now and register your protest outside this kangaroo court.
  • The management are planning to implement a Performance Management process which is designed to identify ‘poor performers’ in order to dismiss them.

What you do know

You will have seen that our managers are becoming more “assertive”, more “results-focused” and more “alert to key performance indicators” (and, quite frankly, more frightened and frightening). Meanwhile staff, who are being asked to do more work with less staff by increasingly authoritarian managers, are paying with their physical and mental health. We all know of at least one colleague (the campus trades unions know of very many) who has become ill because of an unrelentingly impossible workload, or because of a bullying manager. We all know, as well, that neither senior management, nor HR Services will address either the impossible workload (for academic staff they actually want to increase it) or the bullying manager. Instead they harass the individual concerned, by insensitively enforcing the sickness absence monitoring policy which they also want to change to make even more draconian. Management are creating a culture of fear at UEL that none of us should be prepared to accept !!!

What to do now

The joint unions are so concerned with what is happening that we are now working together. We have called all staff meetings at both campuses, where we will be able to tell you what you won’t be told in Infocus. So, if you are not prepared to accept the way management are behaving, please join us to discuss what we can do to fight back!

Joint Unions meeting (Unison – Unite – UCU) at Docklands: Friday 19th October 12:30pm Room EB.G.08


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