Magazine article Times Higher Education

Up Close, Too Personal

Magazine article Times Higher Education

Up Close, Too Personal

Article excerpt

An open letter to Sally Hunt

We note the results of the ballot to effect constitutional change in the University and College Union as communicated by you in March. We believe this ballot was conducted in undue haste following your re-election as general secretary in pursuit of a narrow political agenda to stifle legitimate opposition within the union, including by elected national executive committee members. There was insufficient time to debate what are critical issues for members.

Subsequent to the ballot, we note that there has been a marked increase in "personal" communication between you and the membership on major issues - most recently the Universities Superannuation Scheme. As a union we would not tolerate management engaging individually and directly with our members and bypassing established collective and democratic machinery, and we are thus concerned about such an approach from our union. We are opposed to the individualistic turn that the UCU appears to be taking, since it undermines collective processes and is being falsely counterpoised to building inclusive and participatory activism in the workplace.

This year's UCU congress voted to adopt motions 63, 64 and L5, which raise concerns about the misuse of membership surveys to bypass democratic structures and encourage "timidity and inertia" (in the wording of Motion 63), particularly in the absence of proper time for discussion within branches and committees. Motion L5 calls for union officials and structures to abide by congress decisions, and to use online surveys subsequent only to their debate by congress, sector conference or the NEC (and as sanctioned by the NEC). …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.