BUCU opts for strike ballot over redundancies-by-review and performance management.
BUCU have been actively campaigning against the proposal to close the Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity (IAA) and make around 20 members of staff redundant. At a well-attended general members’ meeting in early October, members voted unanimously in favour of a motion calling for an indicative ballot on industrial action over the proposed closure of the IAA.
It was widely felt that the IAA redundancies were part of a process of ‘redundancies-by-review’, whereby the University is systematically reviewing Schools and Departments on a rotating basis, and in each case proposing compulsory redundancies. Indeed, over the past few years we have seen similar developments in the Press Office, International Student Advisory Service, Sociology, Education, Digital Communications, Philosophy and Theology and Religion, Inlogov, Birmingham Archaeology, and Biological Recording. This is particularly concerning because of the forthcoming launch of a series of ‘Vice Chancellor’s Reviews’ across the University.
BUCU’s indicative ballot witnessed 82% of members vote in favour of an official strike ballot, leading BUCU committee to subsequently vote to endorse an official ballot over the issue of both the IAA redundancies and performance management (the latter an additional concern for most of our members).