Bristol UCU Newsflash, 14th October 2020

1) University Response to our Bristol UCU Motion

The Branch Executive Committee have received the University’s formal response to our motion. You can read it in full here:

This response from the University falls short of meeting our core demands on default online teaching, on the right of individuals to teach online and on sharing institutional infection data with students and staff.

We do welcome, though, the University’s recent decision to provide daily COVID-19 statistics [link], and to adopt a more expansive view of individual risk assessments that considers staff members’ commute, vulnerable family members and an individual’s level of anxiety.

The branch Executive Committee met yesterday to action the next steps. Before that Exec meeting, branch negotiators had already asked for an urgent meeting with University leadership to discuss formally the University’s response. That urgent meeting is now scheduled tomorrow at 16:30.

Exec agreed that if the outcome of said urgent meeting did not to satisfy Exec, it would call a formal Failure to Agree. It would also action a branch members’ consultation on whether we should enter a dispute with the University of Bristol under our union Recognition Agreement. Bristol UCU Branch Officers have worked closely with Regional and National UCU Officials, as set out in the motion.

2) Special Senate – ‘This University resolves online teaching should be the institutional default for TB1’

If you would like to join other UCU members in requesting Members of Senate call a Special Senate (under standing order SEN12 [link]), to discuss the resolution ‘this University resolves online teaching should be the institutional default for Teaching Block 1’, please email

In line with our current branch position, Bristol UCU is looking for at least 20 Members of Senate to call for a Special Senate.

3) Annual General Meeting, Wednesday 18th November 2020, 13:00-14:00

Following confirmation and support from our South West Regional Office, we are now able to hold our delayed AGM 2020 on Wednesday, 18th November.

On the current agenda: the election of branch officers for 2020-2021, and 4 Members of our Executive Committee for 2020-2023. We will also approve the 2019/20 branch accounts.

Current candidates for Branch Officers and Exec:

If you would like to nominate yourself for a role, or would like further information, please email the Branch Secretary Jamie Melrose ( Candidates who were duly nominated in May do not need to seek new nominations.

The closing date for nominations is Wednesday, 4th November 2020 – 14 days before the AGM. An agenda will be circulated on the same day.