We are at the end of the third week of the UCU (University and College Union) strike with another 5-days strike week fast approaching at more than 60 Universities in UK including City. Some of you may have been affected more than others like students from the School of Arts and Social Sciences where about 75% of all modules were affected by the strike. The disruption that is caused to your student experience is the result of the UUK’s (Universities UK which represents the collective position of institutions) failure to have meaningful negotiations with UCU in a timely manner.
Striking academics were asked to ‘work to contract’ between and after the strike days. Staff are deducted full pay for any day on which they strike. However, City is claiming that failure to reschedule work missed during strike days (e.g. putting on lectures they were not paid to teach) will be considered partial performance, meaning that the striking staff members' pay will be deducted twice for the same work. This is legal. But it rejects a long-standing convention of collegial relations in British higher education. Most universities affected by the strike are not imposing it.
I believe that the staff who are affected by the proposed pension cuts and chose to stand up against the unfairness should not be double penalised for their actions. Therefore, I am urging you to show your solidarity with City academics and staff by signing this open letter: http://tinyurl.com/ybytc9n2.
The Students' Union's stance on the strike is available here: www.citystudents.co.uk/news/article/6013/City-Students-Union-Stance-on-UCU-USS-Strike/
If you have any questions, feel free to get in contact with myself by dropping me an email to SUPresident@city.ac.uk or come to the Students’ Union (Level 1, Tait Building) to speak to me in person.