Exeter UCU News – July 2015

  • National UCU news
    • Ballot on pay offer
    • UCU seeking applications for USS pension scheme director post
    • Getting involved in UCU – a course for black members new to trade unions
  • Positions available on the EUCU Committee
  • PDP – seeking your feedback
  • Drop-in sessions
  • EUCU gatherings

  • National UCU news & events
    • Ballot on pay offer

Thank you to everyone who voted in the consultative e-ballot on the employer’s final pay offer for this year.

The results are available here. In summary the outcome was to reject the pay offer, with support for action short of a strike but not supporting strike action. The response rate was 31.7 – 31.9%.

UCU’s Higher Education Committee (HEC) decided:

As members have rejected the final offer, UCU will write to the Universities and Colleges Employers Associate and invoke the dispute resolution procedure. However, given the results of the consultative ballot, there are major risks in proceeding to a statutory ballot at this time. UCU head office will organise four national/regional consultation meetings towards the end of September and report back to HEC on 9 October.

    • UCU seeking applications for USS pension scheme director post

UCU is seeking applications for the position of director in the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS). If you are interested in this 4-year position, the full application pack is available online, including criteria and person specification. The closing date for applications is 26 August.

    • Getting involved in UCU – a course for black members new to trade unions

UCU invites all black members who would like to know more about getting involved with the union to this training event taking place on 18 September in London which will look at campaigning, professional development and tackling discrimination.


  • Positions available on the EUCU Committee

We are pleased to announce that Samantha Briggs has joined the EUCU Committee as St. Luke’s Rep, and we are in discussion with several other members regarding some of the other vacant positions.

However we do still need more people to help represent particular groups of members and/or support the branch organisation in particular roles. Without a fully recruited committee, it is difficult to organise effectively so, if you think there is something we could be doing better, please get involved and make it happen.

We would love to have a chat with anyone who is interested in helping to support the following important areas, or is generally interested in helping with branch activities.

    • Health and Safety Officer
      • A really rewarding and useful role
      • Make a difference to a whole range of issues that affect our  working conditions … from work related stress, bullying… to preventing workplace hazards, injuries and accidents
      • “safety reps have statutory powers to investigate, inspect, represent and be consulted” … this is a much stronger role than almost any other type of rep
      • Reps are also entitled to a) time off with pay and b) training (which takes place in Exeter), to carry out the role
      • There is excellent support from both the national and regional UCU
      • At Exeter we work very closely with both the other campus unions, Unite and UNISON, so you always have others to share concerns and talk with about specific issues
    • Communications Officer
      • Essential for an effective branch
      • Primarily responsible for co-ordinating communications to members (such as this newsletter) with the support of the rest of the committee.
    • Business School Rep
      • Bringing issues arising in the Business School to the Committee’s attention
      • A point of contact for colleagues in the Business School
    • Cornwall Campuses Rep
      • Working with relevant College reps to bring issues arising on the Cornwall Campuses to the Committee’s attention
      • A point of contact for colleagues based in Penryn and Truro

Please do get in touch with Barrie Cooper (President) if you would like more information.


  • PDP – seeking your feedback

Exeter UCU would like to hear about the experiences and views of staff (UCU members and non-members) regarding their recent experience with the Professional Development Programme (PDP) system.  Ensuring the PDP promotion system is fit for purpose is vital in maintaining high standards of teaching and research, providing a respectful and nurturing environment for staff, and enhancing the overall standing of the university.

We would like to hear your experiences and any questions.  In the first instance you can contact Brian Rappert.  All communications will be treated in confidence.


  • Drop-in sessions

Drop-in sessions at Streatham campus will continue over the summer, but with a reduced schedule. The next session is THIS week on Wednesday 15th July, 12.30-1.30pm as usual in the Union Room (Laver Building, to the left of the very first flight of steps). There will be another session in July on Wednesday 22nd July – please check the drop-in session page for updates. We look forward to seeing you.


  • EUCU gatherings
    • It was wonderful to meet those of you who were able to visit our stand at the Staff Festival at Streatham campus on 18th June, and at the friendly gathering at the Imperial on 25th June.
    • We are planning to start a rolling series of informal social lunchtime gatherings to be held at Streatham, St. Luke’s and Penryn campuses. Watch this space…
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