On Tuesday 8 November, we received confirmation from the University and College Union (UCU) that their members have voted to take strike action on Thursday 24, Friday 25 and Wednesday 30 November 2022, in disputes relating to pay and working conditions* and the USS pension.
We recognise the right of colleagues to take this action but are extremely concerned about the impact on our whole community, particularly you – our students.
UCU members have also voted to take ‘action short of a strike’, which means that participating staff will work to their contractual hours only and will not take on any additional or voluntary work. This will also include not rescheduling lectures or classes cancelled due to strike action or, sharing material online in relation to any cancelled lectures or classes. Action short of a strike will begin on Wednesday 23 November and could last up until Thursday 20 April 2023.
The University will remain open throughout the strike action – our aim is for activities and facilities to run as close to a normal service as possible. However, there may be an impact on your teaching or research supervision, both on strike days and (to a lesser extent) during the action short of a strike.
We appreciate the difficult and challenging times in which we are living, and are taking active steps to support both our staff and our students.
We do understand how important pay and working conditions, and indeed pensions, are to all of our staff and we take these concerns very seriously. Pay and the USS pension agreements are negotiated nationally, by UCEA and UUK respectively. As with all HEIs, we input into these discussions and decisions.
We are well-prepared for industrial action and will put in place a series of measures to protect your education and do everything we can to minimise impact of the strike action on your studies, research, or wider experience. We will share more detailed information, ahead of the upcoming strike dates.
* By ‘working conditions’, UCU are referring to pay gaps, workloads, incidence of fixed terms contracts and “casual” employment arrangements.