Open letter from the Vice-Chancellor to staff - 22/11/2019
I write ahead of next week’s planned industrial action by some UCU members over pay, working conditions and pensions.
I want to be clear from the outset: I fully respect the right of staff to take industrial action and I also appreciate how difficult this situation is for staff, especially given your commitment and loyalty to your students.
Whilst I and the University cannot solve these issues alone, I can assure you that I will do everything I can to exert influence where possible. However, what I will not do is make public statements and commitments that I am unable to deliver.
I want a solution that meets the needs of employees and employers alike and I will continue to advocate for such an outcome.
We all know from previous periods of industrial action that emotions can and do run high.
However, I hope that we will be able to treat one another with dignity, courtesy and respect.
These are the values that we share and bind us together as a University.
They should continue to guide the way we conduct ourselves over what will, inevitably, prove to be a challenging period for all of us.
I know many of you will have questions in relation to the industrial action and university business during this time. We have created dedicated industrial action pages on the intranet to answer as many of these as possible, and we will continue to update these regularly.
These pages can be found on the staff intranet and have already been shared via staff Blas.
In addition, staff may also be approached by students. Please do direct them to similar pages on our student intranet pages, where they can find the latest information.
I agree with UCU that it is never too late to stop this action, and I hope they will continue dialogue with university representatives, UUK and UCEA.
I hope we can avert further strike action and achieve a joint and fair solution that will avoid disruption to our students’ learning.