The YUSU Officer Group Statement on Industrial Action
Members of UCU have voted to take industrial action on pay, pensions and working conditions for eight days from 25th November 2019. Officers respect the democratic rights of staff to make their voices heard and take this action. At the same time, industrial action creates real tensions and we know many students are concerned about the potential disruption to their teaching and learning.
This is a complex issue and we wanted to understand our members’ views on this matter, so we consulted students to gauge feelings on the eight days of action.
532 students responded, of which 67.3% indicated they would like to support the UCU Industrial Action, 22.2% to oppose UCU’s Industrial Action, and 10.5% had no preference.
Due to the strength of feeling from students behind UCU’s Industrial Action, the Union is standing in solidarity with striking staff and postgraduate students who are members of UCU in support of them in their action.
If you also want to support striking staff you can talk to your lecturers and stand with them on the picket lines- Officers will also be visiting the picket lines with hot drinks for striking staff. We expect there to be picket lines at the main entrances to the University and areas of high footfall.
While we are supporting the Industrial Action, YUSU will still be putting pressure on the University to try and mitigate the impact on students. There are a number of potential outcomes our lobbying could achieve, partially based on the University’s financial decision regarding the withheld pay. There are numerous factors to consider, so this is not likely to be a quick fix. However, following the previous strikes YUSU was able to secure some funding to be reinvested in students as part of the ‘Equity of Provision’ programme. We will aim to keep students updated with the developments throughout, and we thank all those who filled in the survey for sharing their thoughts.
Should you have any further questions, or should this action directly affect you, we ask that you let your department know and read YUSU’s guidance for students affected by Industrial Action. Staff, Union services and YUSU’s Advice and Support Centre will remain impartial in order to support all students.