What is a strike?
What is a strike?

A strike is a refusal to work organised by a body of employees as a form of protest. In this case the body of employees are our academic and professional staff who are members of UCU.

What do staff do when they strike?
What do staff do when they strike?

During a strike staff who are member of the trade union will not do any work on specific days. This includes, for instance, time before their normal working hours (9:00am and 5:00pm) and includes any activity such as teaching, admin, meetings, emails related to work, marking and research where they represent City.

Are staff paid when they make the decision to strike?
Are staff paid when they make the decision to strike?

The decision to take strike action is not normally a decision taken lightly and during a strike staff are not paid. During the strike some staff may still come to campus but this will be to join picket lines which will be outside University building entrances.

What is a picket line?
What is a picket line?

A picket line is where staff who have made the decision to strike stand outside their workplace to tell other people why they are striking. This is usually very informative and gives students and other staff the chance to hear about the strike dispute. There may be a picket line at each entrance to City. Staff who are on a picket line must not prevent students and other staff from entering City.

What is action short of a strike?
What is action short of a strike?

Action short of a strike is an organised action by a body of employees as a form of a protest through actions that, as the name suggests, are just short of a strike. UCU has announced that in this dispute action short of a strike means that their members will only work to contract; not cover for absent colleagues; not reschedule lectures or classes cancelled due to strike action; and not undertake any voluntary activities over the course of the announced strike dates.

Why have UCU members taken the decision to strike?
Why have UCU members taken the decision to strike?

The strike actions lie on two separate disputes, one about pensions and the other about pay and working conditions. According to UCU the full dispute is about: pensions, pay inequality, job insecurity, rising workloads and pay devaluation.

How many people will be striking?
How many people will be striking?

We don’t know, information about whether or not someone is a member of a trade union or not is confidential and as such neither us or the University know.

How long will the dispute go on for?
How long will the dispute go on for?

It is currently not known how long these disputes will go on for, they are under constant review and require UCU to negotiate with different bodies. This strike action is due to finish on Wednesday 4 December and action short of a strike will start after this. There is currently no end date for this dispute. The Union will keep abreast of the activity and communicate any updates to students.

Will the University be open during strike days?
Will the University be open during strike days?

Yes, the buildings will be open but some services may be affected.

Will the Students’ Union be open during strike days?
Will the Students’ Union be open during strike days?

Yes, the Union will remain open during the strike – including our Advice service. The strike disputes are separate from our full time employed staff and they will not be striking unless they are members of UCU and choose to strike.

Do I need to come in for my lectures during the strike?
Do I need to come in for my lectures during the strike?

If your lecturer is striking then they may let you know this week before the action starts (week commencing 18 November). Keep an eye on your emails and on Moodle for announcements. Some departments are discussing covering planned strike activity with visiting lecturers. This should be communicated to you on your email.

What happens if a substitute teacher is covering my lessons?
What happens if a substitute teacher is covering my lessons?

If your lesson has been covered by your department you should be contacted on your email.

How can I contact someone from my course about what is going on?
How can I contact someone from my course about what is going on?

If you don’t receive clear communications about what is happening you can contact your module tutor, your personal tutor or your programme director however there is a chance there may be a delay in receiving a response as staff could be striking. If you have an urgent query you should contact your Course Office.

Will I be assessed on course content that I miss?
Will I be assessed on course content that I miss?

Where scheduled teaching time is cancelled the University has said that no student will be academically disadvantaged.

What type of things did Universities do last time to help with disruption when there was a UCU strike?
What type of things did Universities do last time to help with disruption when there was a UCU strike?

When UCU last took the decision to strike there were a variety of things that institutions did for students, they included: removing topics from exams, changing assessment methods, extending deadlines, changing the weighting on modules and negotiated with exam boards to make allowances for poor performance that was out of line with performance elsewhere. Not all of these things happened at City but there are options for the University to explore to minimise disruption to students.

Can I still access Student Counselling and Mental Health during the strike?
Can I still access Student Counselling and Mental Health during the strike?

Some professional services staff may be striking, if you have a booked appointment over the strike period keep an eye on your emails.

Can I still access the Student Nurse during the strike?
Can I still access the Student Nurse during the strike?

Some professional services staff may be striking, if you have a booked appointment over the strike period keep an eye on your emails.

Can I still access the Neurodiversity Support Team during the strike?
Can I still access the Neurodiversity Support Team during the strike?

Some professional services staff may be striking, if you have a booked appointment over the strike period keep an eye on your emails.

What is the Students’ Union doing about the strike?
What is the Students’ Union doing about the strike?

The Union is running a referendum vote about the strikes from Friday 22 November to Monday 25 November. Once voting is closed the Union will communicate how it will respond.

How can I make a complaint about the strike?
How can I make a complaint about the strike?

Our Union Advice service is able to advise both individuals and groups of students concerned about the strike, including how to make a complaint.