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Monday’s 10th February – Now a full day strike

Sally Hunt wrote to us earlier today about the next round of action regarding our pay dispute. She also pointed out that the minority Universities who have punitively decided to take a full day’s pay instead of the two hours have all had their strike extended to a full day. These minority institutions are: Aberdeen, Bradford, East London, West of Scotland, Greenwich, Staffordshire, the Leeds College of Art, Manchester Met, Nottingham Trent, Robert Gordon and Queen Mary UL.  As UEL is one of these institutions it is essential that we show solidarity on Monday and show our anger at the way in which this University is treating its staff with complete disrespect. It demonstrates how their alleged commitment to improving trade union and management relations is full of false promises. The VC’s personal decision to act punitively against UCU has forced this response on the part of UCU national.

UCU Officers wrote to the VC last Friday urging him to urgently reconsider his position about deducting a full day’s pay. The Acting Head of HR replied declining to do so which is deeply regrettable as this was a great opportunity to send a signal of better industrial relations at UEL. Such an important opportunity should not have been lost and it is difficult to understand as other than as a slight to UCU members.  This is therefore a crisis of their making not ours.

It is essential therefore that we STAND together on Monday because this punitive decision is a direct challenge to UCU members at UEL. We need to show them our strength and that we will not accept losing a day’s pay. This is a vital day of action for UCU members at UEL. Therefore join us on the Picket Line on Monday. Indeed we argue that it is CRUCIAL that all members come to the picket line on Monday and that lessons DO NOT take place.

We know members are deeply concerned about recovering their pay and so we will be holding advice workshops at Docklands and Stratford to explain how to begin this process locally and giving details of how UCU is engaging in the legal process nationally through a High Court Case. These will be:

  • Docklands Wednesday the 12th February 3:00 – 4:00 Room TBA
  • Stratford Tuesday the 18th February Time TBA Room TBA

Please attend the pickets at your relevant sites and in view of the short notice please contact me directly regarding time you can attend picket duty

In the meantime we again urge the VC to change his mind and to act in a reasonably and proportionate manner as most university employers are. UEL does not need further problems at this difficult time. We remain ready to talk but ask members to prepare to show overwhelmingly that they do not accept this docking of a full day’s pay.

For and on behalf of UCU

 Rae Beaver Chair


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