Your Bristol UCU Newsflash, 13th June 2018

1) #wearetheUniversity

Thanks to everyone who came to #wearetheUniversity on Monday. UCU Past President Joanna de Groot kicked things off, celebrating UCU’s ‘turnaround’ year, our great UK-wide USS campaign and Bristol UCU’s strike action and local initiatives, for example, our Gender Pay Gap claim.

The half-day conference was split into four sessions. In ‘Staff Mental Health: Workload, Stress & Bullying’, participants were supportive of the forthcoming UCU pilot to address stress and workload as a health and safety issue. Participants were concerned that expansion in mental health services for students is not matched by an increase in staff support. Demands were also raised regarding the need for more dedicated campus social space for staff and a proper investigation of the impact of ‘New Ways of Working’ for Professional Services staff.

Emerging from the ‘Challenging Casualisation’ session was a commitment to lodge a local anti-casualisation claim. This would work towards a jointly UCU/UoB negotiated institutional agreement to address casualisation at Bristol, to reduce the use of precarious terms of employment and acknowledge the damage to the ‘staff experience’ of precarious working conditions.

In the session on ‘University Governance’, participants discussed ‘the democratic deficit’ at the University of Bristol, the role of Senate and the Board of Trustees, how managerial edict becomes institutional policy and the general lack of transparency in financial decision-making – Bristol’s position on USS being a case in point.

In ‘Equality at UoB’ a wide range of demands were made concerning eco-friendly staff campus transit, free childcare on campus, the abolition of Senate and the VC role, quotas in appointment procedures, highly visible mental health services, removal of hierarchical University titles, the end of outsourcing and a general commitment to no fees, TEF, REF or KEF.

2) Pay Ballot & Special Higher Education Sector Conference, Thursday, 21st June, Manchester

If you have not voted in the UCU email ballot on our latest pay offer, please check your inbox and vote today! UCU recommends that you vote to reject the 2% offer which does nothing to restore ground lost against inflation.

The consultative ballot closes on 27th June. For more information:

Next week a UCU Special Higher Education Sector Conference has been called by 20 branches ‘to discuss the USS dispute’. Bristol UCU will be sending 3 delegates approved by our Executive committee – Lucy Langley-Palmer, Stephen D’Evelyn and Jamie Melrose.

For more information:

3) Local Hardship Fund – Claim Today

Grade I (or below)? Hourly-Paid Teacher Took strike action? Claim today!

While some members have already claimed from the Fund, it appears many other eligible members have not. Don’t delay! Claim today!

For details on how: