30th November – More messages of solidarity.
Chesterfield College, Sussex University (Sara Crangle), Winchester University, Leicester University, Prof Meg Maguire (King’s College London), Laura Miles (UCU Trustee and NEC member0 Blackburn College joint union safety reps committee, New City College (Tower Hamlets).
Response to VC’s message here
More fantastic messages of support from our students – see here
Message of Support from Sally Hunt General Secretary of UCU
To all members at Brighton:
We are only as strong as those of us who stand with each other. The employer is only as strong as we allow them them to be.
Brighton has a management who appear to have taken a testosterone pill to grow muscles to strut like a peacock amongst their peer group. It doesn’t impress. You need more than aggression to your staff to win an academic reputation .
You need more than a reputation as a bully to raise yourself through the rankings .
They have it so wrong. This is a strong branch , one that understands solidarity. You are part of a union which doesn’t walk away from its members . We all stand with you. They have picked the wrong fight . Solidarity .
Fantastic support for the first full day of strike There were pickets on all main sites from early morning (see some photos here) and these were well supported by students throughout the day with students joining the pickets and/or bringing refreshments to those on the picket lines. We were particularly impressed by the great leaflet produced by students and which they distributed at the Grand Parade picket (see here) . Much appreciated too, were the very many messages of support on social media and in person from Brighton and Hove Trades Council, National Education Union Brighton, Leeds University UCU, Nottingham Trent UCU, UCU Hertfordshire University, Jo McNeill President Liverpool UCU, Lucy Robinson University of Sussex, Rachel Thompson University of Sussex, UCU Left, UCU Sheffiled Hallam University, Newcastle University UCU, South City College Birmingham UCU, Bournville College UCU, Greenwich and Bexley TUC.
Great support for the walkout – fantastic to have support of students (many are writing letters of support, see for example here), colleagues from the NEU, Sussex University and UNISON. Pickets on all sites tomorrow.
Unison Statement on the UCU strike here
Message for students here
15th November Industrial Action to stop compulsory redundancies.
The strike will begin with a mass walkout on Thursday at 1pm from a predetermined gathering point on each campus. If you are teaching at 1pm we ask that you stop your class and join the walkout. There will be placards and news media will be invited. Friday is a whole day strike and we will be organising picket lines. Please attend branch meetings next week.
3rd November RESULT OF BALLOT ANNOUNCED
Members have voted overwhelmingly in support of industrial action against compulsory redundancies.
85% in favour of strike action, and 92% in favour of action short of strike. The turnout exceeded the 50% threshold now required by law. Many thanks to everyone who participated in the ballot and contributed to this excellent result.
Two members of staff, both UCU members, remain under threat of compulsory redundancy and we have informed management that the position of the UCU is thatt there is no genuine redundancy situation because there is still work for these staff to do and that more job losses are unwarranted given the departure of 90 staff under the severance scheme just a few weeks ago.
We have reiterated our position that unless the University removes the threats of compulsory redundancy, the union will pursue a campaign of industrial action.
The UCU Coordinating Committee has requested authorisation from the union’s national leadership for both strike action and action short of strikes in the coming weeks. Once authorisation is granted, the law requires notice to be given to the employers of at least two weeks before the action takes place.
We hope that our strong ballot result and the concrete threat of action will induce the University to rescind the redundancies during the coming weeks. But members will need to be ready to take action if management insist on sacking our colleagues.
We will keep members informed of developments as they occur.