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ucuRISING strike dates

The Friday email: 11 November 2022

11 November 2022

UCU Rising: strike days and live event next week

Earlier this week the union confirmed the following days of strike action as part of the UCU Rising campaign in higher education:

  • Thursday 24 November
  • Friday 25 November
  • Wednesday 30 November (with a national demonstration at King's Cross in London)

Alongside this we will be commencing action short of a strike (ASOS) to commence on Wednesday 23 November in England, Scotland and Wales, and on Friday 18 November in Northern Ireland. For more details please read the UCU Rising FAQ, which is being continually updated.

Next week is Join the Union Week when we will all be tasked with building our picket lines by building our union. We are holding an online UCU LIVE event on Tuesday 15 November, 18:30 and we would like you to join us on Facebook, YouTube or Twitter. Your local branch will be receiving packs of hard copy recruitment materials but you can help now by contacting a colleague and getting them to sign up to UCU.

It has never been more important to build our strength in numbers in university workplaces and every one of us has a part to play. Please help build our union, build our picket lines and deliver the massive action needed to win our disputes on pay, conditions and pensions.

Respect FE: UCU winning for college staff

Our Respect FE campaign on pay, workload, and professional respect for further education staff continues with some college branches still taking action and others considering offers from management. We have seen the impact your action is having with improved offers and settlements on pay and conditions in many colleges across England. More and more FE workers are fighting back and joining the union and we have welcomed over 3,000 new UCU members since the campaign launched in June. Do not forget to sign and share our five-point-charter for professional respect in FE here.

Strike over low pay at Barnet and Southgate College

Barnet and Southgate College will be hit with strike action on Wednesday 16 November, impacting the college's open day. Staff have already taken three days of strike action in the dispute which is over management's paltry 2% pay award for the previous two financial years (1% 2020-21 and 1% 2021-22). UCU said the college has two weeks to make a meaningful pay offer or its members will picket the college open day at the High Barnet campus.

University of Sheffield International College: strike over pay and conditions

UCU members at the University of Sheffield International College will take five days of strike action in a long running dispute over low pay. The dates are: Thursday 17, Friday 18, Monday 28, Tuesday 29 and Wednesday 30 November. Staff will also work to rule from Monday 21 November, which includes working strictly to their contracted hours, refusing to make up work lost as a result of strike action, and refusing to cover for absent colleagues. The action will be the first ever strike to take place in a privatised higher education provider.

North East college group threatens to axe up to 19 staff

Sunderland College, Hartlepool Sixth Form and Northumberland College are threatening to sack up to 19 staff before Christmas. Most of the staff set to be sacked are academic mentors who earn just £20k per year supporting, motivating and guiding hundreds of students at the colleges to reach their full potential. The colleges are run by Education Partnership North East, which will bank £280k by making the cuts. The employer is in surplus and has over £23m of reserves.

Prison educators fighting for a proper pay rise

Following the Novus UCU prison education pay dispute, there is an article in Huck (8 November 2022) on why prison educators need better pay, their daily challenges and the difference they can make to prisoners' lives. As well as improving employability and reducing reoffending, prison education helps families. You can read the article here.

UCU 'teach out' sessions

We are running a number of 'teach out' sessions during the upcoming HE industrial action in November. These short 90-minute online interactive workshops are part of UCU's continued professional development programme and are open to all UCU members in all sectors. We hope you will find something from the list below that interests you and also hope you will be able to promote the sessions to your colleagues. Each link below takes to you a registration page along with more information about each course. 

Trans awareness week webinar

Trans awareness week will take place between 13 and 19 November. UCU has organised a webinar on Tuesday 15 November, 16:30, entitled 'Trans and non-binary equality: awareness and action', to raise awareness about experiences of trans and non-binary people and how equality can be realised across UCU. You can register for the webinar here.

Annual St Andrew's Day anti-racism march and rally

The Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) have announced details of the annual St Andrew's Day anti-racism march and rally, to take place on Saturday 26 November 2022. This is a crucial year for the fight against racism. The Sheku Bayoh Family Justice campaign needs our continuing support; racist UK government immigration policy and rhetoric are only getting worse; and we face a cost of living crisis and attacks on pay that disproportionately impact Black workers. Assemble at 10:30 on Glasgow Green, marching off at 11:00, with the rally at 12:00 at the Renfield Centre in Bath Street, Glasgow.

Last updated: 11 November 2022