Picket Line Photos

Some photos taken on picket lines during strike days, 25-26 May 2016.  If you have any others, please email to ucue-asstsec-comms@ed.ac.uk


Strike Information (25 & 26 May)

strike1Volunteers needed

The Committee would be very grateful for as many members as possible to participate in the picket lines, or to assist in the branch office, on Wednesday 25th and Thursday 26th May. Please email ucu@ed.ac.uk if you’re able to help out.

Notifying UoE – your rights

The Committee is aware that some managers are being rather insistent in their requests for information on whether members will be taking strike action. You are under no obligation to tell them in advance – UCU HQ has already provided the University with the information required by law.

The UCU Strike FAQ page (https://www.ucu.org.uk/strikefaqs) states:

Q:           Do I have to tell my employer that I am taking strike action?

A:            It is often the case that managements will send out formal-sounding letters telling you to declare in advance whether you will be taking industrial action. This can have the effect of misleading and intimidating members. To be clear, you are under NO OBLIGATION to inform management in advance as to whether you will be taking part in strike action or action short of a strike. In order to fulfil legal requirements, employers have been provided with statistical information about UCU members taking industrial action, but not individual names. However, if your manager asks you after the strike whether you took action, you should answer truthfully.

Organising meeting

There will be a strike planning meeting on Monday 23rd May at 1pm to 2pm at the branch office, 12 Buccluech Street.

Out-of-office notices

The committee suggests that members may wish to set up an automatic email reply, on the days of the strike, saying “I will not reply to email until May 27, as I am on strike”, “Email messages will not be replied to until May 27, because of the industrial action called by UCU”, or something similar.

Workload Meeting, 17 May

UCU Edinburgh are organising a meeting on workload on Tuesday 17 May 4-5pm, in the Project Room (1.06) in 50 George Square, to share the results of the recent survey on workload done by UCU and the other campus unions. UCU member Angi Lamb will be there to talk us through the results, and UCU committee member Sophia Lycouris will be there to introduce members to the ‘workload working group’ that was set up recently. Do come along if you want to hear the results, and in order to decide how we should take the results of the survey forward to improve our working conditions.

Anti-Casulaisation Lunch, 16th May

UCU Edinburgh are organising an ‘anti-casualisation lunch’ on Monday 16th May, 1-2pm in the UCU offices (12 Buccleuch street), to bring staff together to discuss the use of hourly-paid, fixed-term, and other casualised forms of contract at the university. In addition to a sandwich lunch, with tea and coffee, we will have John Slaven from STUC (Scottish Trades Union Congress) visiting to talk about their anti-casualisation campaign Better than zero (http://www.betterthanzero.org), and tutors from Humanities and Social Science will be there to update members on their campaigning for better conditions (see their petition here:  http://blake2.ppls.ed.ac.uk/~s1264545/petition_tutors). Everyone is welcome, casualised or not. Non-members are also welcome, so please invite colleagues who are not (yet?) members. If possible we would appreciate if you could RSVP by emailing ucu@ed.ac.uk, so we have an idea of how many sandwiches to order.

Statement in Support of Tutors in CHSS

UCU Edinburgh fully supports the ambitions of tutors in CHSS to:

– improve their working conditions

– achieve consistency across the college

– guarantee that their standing as members of staff is properly recognised;

in line with principles to which the university itself is committed, as an aspiring employer of choice and provider of world class student experience.

Staff should be fairly and transparently paid for all work that they do, and the university should do its utmost to support and care for its staff as its most important resource.

EGM Motion on Attendence Monitoring

The following motion was approved at the UCU Edinburgh EGM on 28th April 2016.

UCU Edinburgh notes that the recent request for all academic staff to complete attendance monitoring:

1) represents a change to contracts without consultation;

2) is prompted by the toxic spread of mistrust of non-EU citizens; and,

3) is wholly unacceptable to staff as a matter of principle.

UCU Edinburgh calls on University of Edinburgh management to:

1) clarify the exact requirements of the relevant legislation;

2) implement the minimum possible attendance monitoring for staff on Tier 2 and Tier 5 visas; and,

3) make the strongest possible representations to UKVI regarding the extension of surveillance requirements in the workplace, and let staff know that they have done so.

The motion is being sent to Zoe Lewandowski, Director, Human Resources, requesting a University response.

We would like to continue to hear from any member of UCU who has a view on the University’s ‘attendance monitoring policy’. We will also keep you informed of any response from University senior management.