HE national disputes 2021

Boycott Leicester

Jamie Melrose (University of Bristol)

31 January 2020

Election address

Do you want an experienced University trade unionist on your NEC, well versed in your priorities, with a track record of improving working conditions?

Do you want a decision-maker on NEC, with a track record of working with UCU members, committed to making UCU decision-making transparent, strategic and rooted in your workplace priorities?

If the answer is yes, vote Jamie for NEC.

I am an hourly-paid casualised teacher at the University of Bristol. I am also the branch Anti-Casualisation Officer and Secretary, a serial caseworker - on cases collective as well as individual -, and am also UCU South West Regional Chair.

As part of the branch officer team of the Bristol branch, I have:

  • spent nearly ten years negotiating and representing members, securing workplace gains
  • helped build the branch into one of the strongest in HE.
  • secured employer commitments to reduce the use of casualised contracts and close the gender pay gap
  • defended members dismissed on draconian performance management grounds
  • secured the back payment of exploited fixed-term staff working over grade

I am proud of being part of a branch dedicated to members' interest and concerns.

I consider myself a UCU 'militant', not because of any untested verbal radicalism, but because of my work on the HE shop floor, building a union which afflicts the comfortable and comforts the afflicted. I want to make sure that this unionism, a well-organised, demand-driven UCU is represented on our NEC.

If elected to NEC, my standards will be transparency, strategic thinking and the language of priorities.

Transparency. UCU decision-making needs to be clear and open to members. That means representative, inclusive decision-making by as large a proportion of members as possible.

Strategy. When I served on UCU's Commission for Effective Industrial Action, I pushed for a UCU that had plan, that had a medium to long-term vision for its collective UK UCU struggle for improved terms and conditions, centred on building pre andpost-92 branches.

Priorities. For a union committed to improving the working condition and status of migrant members, or tackling academic-related staff's precarious, re-structuring rife working life, words alone are not enough. We as UCU must resource these priorities properly.

I promise that a vote for me is a vote for an organisational turn in UCU.

Our second Great University Strike in two years has provided the foundation for a strong UCU in every university.

Together let's guarantee that happens.

Vote Jamie for NEC.

Go to https://jamie4nec.home.blog/ for more on my campaign.

Last updated: 30 January 2020