Emergency motion in solidarity with support staff strike

Motion presented on 24th June 2019 GMM


Support staff at the University of Birmingham, represented by UNISON, have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action (79%) over pay and conditions. In particular they are asking the University:

• Gives an above RPI inflation pay increase to all support staff;

• Becomes a Living Wage Accredited employer;

• Eliminates the gender pay gap by 2020;

• Fixes the Support Staff pay spine & allocates a budget for it;

• Negotiates with all unions on the joint unions’ report on working conditions at the university

Full details of the dispute can be found on the UoB UNISON website, here: http://uobunison.org.uk/dispute

This motion calls on UCU to share the following rights with our members and to share UNISON materials with our members:

• Any employees (whether UCU/UNISON member or not) refusing to cross picket lines would not be involved in “secondary action” as it is the same place of work.

• Not crossing a picket line would constitute participating in a “properly organising ballot” (whether UCU/UNISON member or not) and thus a breach of contract, but the individual in question would be protected from dismissal by trade union legislation.

• HR have confirmed at a recent support staff JUC (negotiating meeting) that staff will not face disciplinary action for refusing to cross picket lines as this is your legal right.

• Taking part in the strike action would lead to a pay deduction calculated at 1/365th of annual salary for academic and academic related staff.

Further to the above, BUCU are also disappointed that the University are set to deduct 1/260th of annual pay for all support staff involved in action. We feel that it is grossly unfair to make a significantly larger deduction for support staff, especially in the context of a strike over pay and conditions for the lowest paid. This motion therefore calls for:

• The University to reduce their strike deduction for support staff pay to 1/365th of annual pay, in line with academic and academic related staff.

• BUCU to recommend a donation to the UNISON strike fund of 1/365th annual pay from all academic and academic related staff

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