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Update from the YUSU Sabbatical Team: 2020 Industrial Action

On Monday UCU (a Trade Union for academic staff) announced 14 days of industrial action over the period Thursday 20th February to Friday 13th March. Members of UCU voted to take industrial action on pay, pension and working conditions. At this stage it is hard to say exactly how University of York students will be affected.    


YUSU respects the rights of academic staff to take industrial action and make their voices heard in this way.  Officers recognise that this is an important issue for staff, and they will not have taken the decision to back strike action lightly. 


Students’ input determined YUSU’s stance supporting the last round of strikes in late 2019 but we are very aware this new round of action is likely to impact students in different ways. Strike action can create real tensions for the Union so before taking any action we want to understand students’ views on the issue.


In the coming days the Sabbatical Team will be talking to students to understand their views, concerns and how students’ want YUSU to best represent them. We understand that we have a very politically varied student population, students may request us to both condemn and support the strikes, therefore we have to carefully consider a wide variety of viewpoints before taking a public stance. 


Alongside this, YUSU will be lobbying the University to ensure that the adverse impact of the strike on students is limited.  We’ll be working to ensure that students’ questions are answered and helping students to get a clear understanding of their rights should their education be disrupted.  


Student briefings  

  • Read YUSU’s guidance for students affected by industrial action here.  This briefing note sets out the steps you can take if you feel that your studies have been adversely affected. 

  • Read the Office for Students guidance here for students impacted by industrial action. 

Action to take now 

  • Keep an eye out for updates - Look out for messages from your Department.  They will be in touch to let you know of any changes to timetabled activity.   

  • For specific concerns or questions - contact your Department in the first instance.  

  • Find out more about the issues - Keep an eye on this page for updates on key announcements, FAQs and links to events that YUSU will be organising to help you find out more info on the issues behind industrial action.   

Latest announcements 



We are two weeks away from the start of the Industrial Action and we want to understand more about your views on it. We have put together a short survey on the Industrial Action, which will take less than one minute to fill out, to gauge what students feel about this wave of action. Your rights as a student will stay the same regardless of what preference you indicate.

Please fill in this survey by 12 noon on Wednesday 12th February. The Officer team will make a further statement shortly after this.