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Fri 22 April 2022

The Friday email: 22 April 2022

22 April 2022

No to 'fire and rehire': support Richmond upon Thomas College staff

UCU is in dispute with Richmond upon Thames College (RUTC) due to its plans to dismiss its entire teaching workforce of 127 lecturers and offer re-engagement on inferior contractual terms. The college wants to force through cuts to holidays which would see lecturers lose 13 days holiday leave entitlement. RUTC UCU members unanimously backed moving to an industrial action ballot and strike action. The ballot will close on Friday 6 May. An online solidarity event has been organised for Monday 25 April, 17:00-18:00 (Microsoft Teams link) and more information is available here.

Higher education: sector conferences on Four Fights and USS pension disputes

The special higher education sector conference (SHESC) on the Four Fights dispute took place on Wednesday 20 April, which was attended by over 200 delegates from over 100 branches and committees. Online voting for the delegates will close on Monday 25 April. You can read the general secretary Jo Grady's explanatory email here. The SHESC on the USS dispute will happen on Wednesday 27 April. Once the results of voting from both conferences have been published, your elected representatives on the higher education committee (HEC) will meet to consider how to implement conference's decisions. 

Respect FE: college staff deserve better

UCU submitted a claim for 2022-23 to the further education employer body, the Association of Colleges (AoC), calling for: a 10% pay increase on all points with a minimum uplift of £2,000; all colleges to become accredited Living Wage Foundation employers; and significant movement towards agreements on workloads. The claim comes after thousands of FE members in England voted in an indicative ballot with 91% of voters backing industrial action as part of our campaign on pay, conditions, and professional respect.

Ukraine: education union solidarity

Education International (EI), the global union federation for education workers including UCU, has launched a solidarity assistance fund for members of Ukrainian education unions who are still in Ukraine or have been forced to flee the country and are now refugees. For details of how members and branches can contribute to the education union solidarity fund, as well as current statements from UCU and EI on the war in Ukraine, please click here

Equality research conference 2022

You can now register for UCU's Equality research conference 2022, entitled 'Equal voices? - demanding recognition and action in the struggle for equality'. Registration deadline is Tuesday 10 May, and the conference will be held over three online sessions from Tuesday 17-Thursday 19 May.

Save the date: TUC national demonstration, Saturday 18 June

On Saturday 18 June, the trade union movement will be taking to the streets to demand action on the cost of living--a new deal for working people--and a pay rise for all workers. Families across the country are bearing the brunt of the cost-of-living storm. Every worker--public and private sector--needs a real pay rise in 2022. UCU will be mobilising in support of the demonstration and more information will be made available soon by the Trades Union Congress (TUC). Please save the date: Saturday 18 June, assemble at 11am, march at 12 noon, rally at 1pm in the Parliament Square in London.

Last updated: 28 April 2022