Lily Cole, international fashion model, actress and social entrepreneur, who was recently recognised with an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters by GCU for her outstanding contribution to humanitarian and environmental causes pulled out of speaking at Central St Martins due to the strike on the 3rd.
The combined unions at GCU are pleased to see that she has been prepared to go the extra mile by doing this.
When she was awarded the Honorary degree of Doctor of Letters, Lily said amongst other things “I think the most important things in life are really simple and it is about our attitude to life”. We salute her sincerity in respecting why university staff were on strike on Tuesday.
Nick McKerrel: “Our strike on Tuesday is about fair pay in Higher Education”
ON Tuesday 23rd October, Members of the EIS employed in Higher Education will be striking. At the request of the Caledonianunion blog, Dr Nick McKerrell Convenor of the Combined Unions at Caledonian and the EIS branch sent a message to all staff at GCU:
“Our strike on Tuesday is about fair pay in Higher Education. Over the last four years staff have accepted meagre increases recognising the economic situation that we all find ourselves in (although not because of anything we have done). These sub-inflation pay offers has meant that staff have taken pay cuts of around 12% : for a lecturer at the top of the scale that amounts to a loss of £5000!”
“Meanwhile senior University Management across the sector have pocketed inflation busting bonuses and continue to jet around the world. Research released by the EIS this week shows that Scottish University have millions in reserve but will not put a decent offer for pay on the table for staff.”
“The STUC’s campaign against cuts in public spending states there is a better way – never has that phrase been more true for Higher Education and recognising the contribution of ordinary staff”
There will be a picket line at the main gates from 8am. Although all the other unions at GCU are in dispute over pay they are not taking strike action at the moment. But the local EIS branch would like to invite fellow union members to come along to a lunchtime rally at the main gates of the University at 12 noon.
Use your lunch hour time to come along to the rally and show your support for striking colleagues – they will be really happy to see you.
All the best
Dr Nick McKerrell
Convenor of Glasgow Caledonian Combined Union Committee and EIS/ULA branch.
EIS Strike Day Tuesday March 23rd Lunchtime Rally at Cally Gates 12 noon Show support and solidarity. Fair Pay for All H.E. Staff. Speakers from all the main unions at GCU
Although UCU has voted not to strike on this occasion, we are fully behind efforts to win better conditions for staff
On behalf of UCU members at Glasgow Caledonian Local UCU President Douglas Chalmers sent a message of solidarity to fellow academics in EIS who are taking action on the 23rd and confirmed he would be speaking at the Rally at midday in their support.
Said Douglas: “Although our members did not vote for strike action on the 23rd, we are fully behind all efforts to help win better conditions for all staff in Higher Education in Scotland and wider afield. The latest figures released in relation to surpluses held by Scottish universities shows that there are funds there, which the universities are choosing not to use to help the living standards of their staff. This is wrong. It is about time that staff at Scottish universities were properly rewarded and appreciated by management. The vision held by the management of Scottish Universities, and those South of the border, is negative and self-defeating, and does not create the world class universities our country needs. We say this is wrong and has to change”
Following the decision of EIS to strike, Mike Robinson, Unite’s National Officer for education circulated Unite members with the following message:
EIS strike action
“EIS have decided to strike on the 23rd October and will be applying a work to contract from the 24th October onwards until further notice. EIS have contacted Unite asking for an understanding about their strike action and any picket lines etc in higher education institutions where EIS have membership…..
Unite members should not carry out work of other staff in any event as part of our work to contract action applied in 2011.
Any member who feels endangered or have a conscientious objection to crossing a picket line should seek advice from your local Regional Officer on how to respond to local management in these circumstances if their route to their workplace is likely to involve crossing an EIS picket line.
It is in acceptable to engage in discussion with pickets and even to express support for their protest.
However at this time Unite members are not being called on to strike and until the national committee considers whether Unite should take part in a dispute, members should not take strike action but should not carry out any work normally done by others in dispute either”.
I have attached the link below to show my statement of support and I would like to take this opportunity to express that the sabbatical team will be fully supporting the strike and that any presence you may have on campus in this day will be supported by GCUSA.
We have informed students that the strike is happening and that there will be a limited amount of disruption and I have worked with the University to ensure services are still opened in the base and the library remains along with the GCUSA building and services,
Following the consultative on-line survey of members, and with the employers unwilling to negotiate on a joint union pay claim it has been decided that UCU will ballot members nationally on possible industrial action over pay. The employers offer remains 1% which does nothing to address current cost of living rises or the real terms pay cuts brought about by 4 years of below inflation rises. Other campus unions, such as EIS and UNISON, are also balloting members on action over pay.
You should be receiving your ballot paper over the next few days. Please use your vote and make sure that your view is heard. For background figures on the dispute see here For a leaflet explaining our position in 5 easy points – see here
Survey on Performance Management in HE – let them know what you think of PDAR
Members are encouraged to participate in the Cranfield University survey, which forms part of a research project on workforce management. The study is anonymous and takes about 15 minutes to complete.
A Future That Works, March and Rally, Saturday 20 October 2012, Glasgow – Stewarding Arrangements
The STUC is currently considering stewarding arrangements for the march and rally on the 20 October. Glasgow City Council’s protocol for parades and processions stated that there should be 1 steward for every 10 participants in the march. In order to meet the demand STUC is asking that affiliates provide a number of stewards dependent on the size of their membership and UCU at GCU has been asked to provide help.
If you are willing to be a UCU steward for this event, please email Eleanor McGowan email@example.com with your name and contact details.