Your Bristol UCU Newsflash, 4th October 2017

1) Vote Yes, Vote Now – USS E-Ballot

Please vote now and vote yes in the USS E-Ballot (‘Defend your pension: please vote now’, 25th September; ‘Vote in the USS consultative e-ballot’, 20th September)

For more information about cuts to USS pension holders’ benefits, please see the Bristol UCU blog post ‘Your Pensions Under Attack. Stand with UCU. Vote YES to defend our benefits’ [link].

2) USS Meeting, 1pm-2pm, 12th October 2017, LT1, 43 Woodland Rd – Pauline Collins, Chair of UCU Superannuation Working Group

Bristol UCU hosts Pauline Collins, Chair of UCU’s Superannuation Working Group, and at the centre of pension negotiations, on Thursday, 12th October.

Pauline will speak to Bristol UCU members about the negotiations and USS in general.

The meeting starts at 1pm, LT1 in 43 Woodland Road (Anthropology and Archaeology).

3) PhDs Go Free

If you’re a PhD student and are teaching, it is now free to join University of Bristol UCU.

Existing PhD members who teach also go free.

For more information, please consult the UCU FAQs [link].

4) Time To Change Pledge

UCU, along with other campus trade unions, will be in attendance at this Friday’s Time to Change event [link] in the Wills Memorial Building, part of the University’s commitment to changing how we think, talk and act about mental health.

We will have a union stall and poster board from 3.00 pm with the pledge being signed at 4.00 pm.

5) ‘Have Your Say’ Staff Survey

Members are encouraged to participate in the ‘Have Your Say’ Staff Survey:

The survey, being conducted by colleagues in Experimental Psychology, is a consultation with staff about what should be measured in the next University-wide Staff Survey.

The campus trade unions consider existing plans for monitoring staff well-being as limited. For example, we have been lobbying for a Workplace Stress Survey to be completed in addition to the Staff Survey but have been turned down.

We consider it vital that some questions from Health and Safety Executive Management Standards [PDF] are included in the Staff Survey as these indicate how working conditions may affect staff well-being. There are 34 HSE indicators but significant questions would include ‘I have unachievable deadlines’, ‘I have to work very intensively’, ‘I am pressured to work long hours and I have unrealistic time pressures’.

6) Celia Hollingworth – Book of Condolence

There is a Book of Condolence for Celia on the 2nd floor of IT Services, Great George Street.

It will be at the UCU office in a couple of weeks.

Bristol UCU officers are happy to take online submissions – – and add them to the book.

We currently have no further details about Celia’s funeral or to whom donations should be made. We will update members as soon as we have more details.