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Bournemouth University rapped by lecturers' union

1 June 2007 | last updated: 14 December 2015

Bournemouth University was taken to task today by lecturers at the inaugural UCU congress. Delegates from across the UK backed a motion from staff at Bournemouth University that strongly criticised the University's handling of staff contracts.

 Amid the high-profile debates on international boycotts and government plans to spy on students, lecturers overwhelmingly backed the Bournemouth delegation's motion that attacked a new contract the University is trying to impose on staff that slashes their annual leave entitlement and changes their rights to copyright on their work.

The motion was overwhelmingly passed on Thursday morning.

After the meeting UCU general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: 'It is just not acceptable for universities to think they can ride roughshod over the union or rewrite the rule book. UCU delegates here in Bournemouth made it quite clear today that the likes of Bournemouth University had better think again. University staff do an incredible job, often despite the best efforts of their managers, and should be rewarded not attacked.'

Bournemouth University UCU representative, Paul Freedman, said: 'What is happening at Bournemouth is not acceptable and I am delighted that my colleagues around the country have backed our cause. The University must take on board what UCU members have said today and recognise that if they do not withdraw their plans they will be facing the full weight of the national union.'

The full motion backed by UCU delegates on Thursday said: 'Bournemouth University branch notes that the University's management has introduced a revised contract for new starters deviating from the 1992 national contract which reduces their leave from 35 to 30 days; which removes the cap on 18 hours teaching contact per week; which ignores the six weeks of self-directed study leave; which removes the intellectual property rights on personal lecture notes as an aid to teaching; and which revised contract the management now wants to induce existing staff to accept. Accordingly the branch calls upon Conference to instruct our national leadership to engage with the university management so that they desist from these actions.'

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