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UCU criticises Sheffield Hallam University for trying to turn students into snitches

26 November 2019

  • Union says strong-arm tactics won't work and the institution should focus on trying to resolve the dispute
  • Students take to social media to ridicule university's demands to name striking staff

UCU has said Sheffield Hallam University should stop trying to use strong-arm tactics and get back round the negotiating table after the university was accused of trying to students into snitches.

UCU members at the university walked out yesterday as part of an eight-day strike over increasing workloads. The university has posted a form on its website where students can enter the details of lectures missed because of the action.

However, the plan backfired badly after Hallam students took to social media to ridicule and criticise their university. UCU said Hallam and other UK universities affected by strikes should focus on trying to resolve the disputes.

UCU general secretary Jo Grady said: 'Students are rightly angry at efforts from Sheffield Hallam to try and turn them into surveillance tools and we welcome their support for our action and their refusal to do this. The students' response has ensured that the university's strong-arm tactics have backfired massively. They have been ridiculed on social media and now stand out as something of a pariah, rather than an institution trying to deal with the problems and avoid disruption.

'The message from staff and students to Sheffield Hallam, and any other university considering these types of tactics, is to get back round the negotiating table. We saw these type of ineffectual tactics during the pensions dispute last year and all they did was harden strikers' resolve and anger students.'

Last updated: 26 November 2019