The two motions below were passed today at a quorate general meeting, nem com. They have been forwarded to UCU head office for inclusion in the agenda of the UCU National Congress in May.
For HE Sector Conference – Motion on Working Hours and Stress
Conference notes the findings of the UCU Stress Survey 2014 and in particular the proportion of members working over 50 hours a week (41%).
Conference believes that excess working hours are increasingly a cultural norm within the sector as staff struggle to meet the multiple demands of customer-oriented teaching, pastoral care for an increasingly stressed student body, quality measurement, research and funding targets, elaborate administrative structures and electronic presenteeism.
Conference calls on UCU to campaign for increased awareness of the Working Time Directive among members and university management, in particular the weekly maximum of 48 hours and the requirement for a continuous weekly break of 24 hours minimum.
Conference calls on UCU to produce model working hours policies within the next 12 months and to support branches in getting these policies instituted.
For Full Congress (HE and FE Sectors) – Motion on Anti-Casualisation
This conference believes that the increasing casualisation of labour across all post-16 education institutions needs to be robustly tackled at local and national levels.
The policy of having at least one anti-casualisation representative on all UCU branch committees needs to be properly enforced in order to boost local campaigns, and make full use of facilities time.
Increasing communication on local union campaigns and victories needs to be implemented more effectively, in order to increase solidarity and information sharing across the HE, FE and ACE sectors. UCU should also support and encourage collaboration with grassroots campaigns wherever they emerge.
With the increasing prevalence of casualised contracts within the sector it is essential that this issue becomes a focus of UCU campaigning. Casualisation is negatively impacting on the diversity, sustainability, and quality of post-16 education as a whole and should be regarded as a matter of urgency for all members.