Last week the University and College Union (UCU) announced that its members will vote on whether to take strike action in connection with pensions, pay and conditions. Their membership includes staff across academic and professional services at our University.
We do not yet know if members will vote in favour, or if any strike action will take place. However we wanted to make you aware of the situation and explain the issues further, as we know if strike action is called this could impact our students.
One of the issues over which UCU may call strike action is staff pay.
Our University can’t make decisions on pay on its own. Instead, our pay increases are negotiated at a national level by the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA). The last pay increase was in August 2021.
- This pay increase was 1.5%-3.65%, with the largest increases for those who earn the least
- Over half of our colleagues receive annual increments which amount to 1.5%-1.7% of their salary, in addition to the pay award
Our benefits package
Our staff and students are at the heart of everything we do. As well as salaries, we make sure everyone has good levels of annual leave, access to learning and development and to wellbeing and support services, as part of a full benefits package.
We are proud to be accredited by the Living Wage Foundation, which sets the wage floor for our lower-paid staff. We have also been working hard to improve conditions of employment such as contracts, workload and our gender and ethnicity pay gaps.
Our University is working hard to deliver both the best benefits for our staff and also ensure our financial sustainability.
We believe that to propose strike action after the serious disruption of the last 18 months, just as we are returning to some form of ‘normal’, is deeply regrettable. In the event of strike action we will do everything possible to inform and support our students and staff.
- We hold regular open meetings with staff which you are welcome to watch live or watch back.
- We are in regular contact with our campus trade unions and we continue to talk to them about the issues they have highlighted, and we have already taken action to address them. You can find minutes of many of our meetings with the trade unions on StaffNet. Where issues occur we will tackle them collaboratively and we will be transparent about the actions that we take.