The letter below was sent to the Vice-Chancellor on the 17th May 2022. There is a PDF version available too.
17th May 2022
We are writing ahead of the marking boycott called by UCU due to start on the 23rd May. No member of staff takes industrial action lightly and we are open to negotiating a way to prevent the boycott going ahead – an outcome that would be desirable for all involved.
While the mandate for strike and action short of a strike is national, we have the power as a local branch to stand down the marking boycott aspect of the action short of a strike, if UEB can agree to a minimum set of requirements. In this particular dispute, then, it is very much within your power to bring the marking boycott to an end (or indeed prevent it from going ahead in the first place).
Please find below our requests for the USS Pensions and Four-Fights disputes:
- Make a public statement (with UCU Cardiff) calling for the protection of our pensions (joining institutions like Cambridge, Oxford, Bristol, KCL, Bath, Birkbeck, Glasgow & Imperial, amongst others)
- Pay in the Deficit Recovery Contributions into members’ pensions
- Write to UCEA to urge them to accept UCU’s national demands
- Commit publicly to publish detailed information for ethnic, gender and disability pay gap and to work with the unions meaningfully in addressing inequality, including looking at recruitment, career development, and career progression issues and addressing the demands in our recent child-care claim during the 2022/23 academic year.
- Commit publicly to agree with the unions a framework to address workload by June 2023
- Commit publicly to implement contracts for PGAs, reduce the remit for the use of variable hour contracts, and improve conditions for staff in those contracts, as negotiated as part of the Teaching Delivery Governance Group.
- Commit publicly to end the use of relevant factors in open-ended contracts and work with the unions to guarantee secure employment to research staff.
- Offer a bonus of £250 per month to all workers during the 2022/23 academic year in compensation for the pay deflation our salaries have suffered and considering the increasing inflation.
We look forward to hearing from you soon.