UCU University of Leeds branch is the union of academic and academic-related staff working at or for the University of Leeds. We are one of the largest trade union branches in UK higher education.
UCU is a collective democratic organisation. As members we agree together, where we can, our policies and our negotiating agenda. We elect department representatives and a branch committee from the academic and academic-related staff (including postgraduate students who teach) at the university to make sure others in the union knows about workplace problems in our areas, to represent the academic and academic-related staff in meetings with university senior management and to support individual members with problems at work.
See the branch calendar for details of all-members meetings, committee meetings and other key meetings and dates. Reps try to keep this up to date but always check emails in case of changes.
All-members general meetings
UCU members get together for ‘general meetings’ scheduled throughout the year, including an annual general meeting. There are usually four to six scheduled general meetings, and on top of that members, or the committee, or the officers can call additional meetings to discuss and try to agree a policy or strategy on urgent issues.
General meetings are for all members of the branch who are able to attend. They’re where we make collective decisions which are then the agreed positions of the academic and academic-related staff of the university in the discussions with senior management. Attend if you can!
The branch rules include the ‘standing orders‘ of the meetings. These are the procedures to make to ensure decisions are made is done fairly and democratically. There’s also less official but perhaps more easily understandable advice about meetings at ‘making UCU general meetings work better‘
Between general meetings, members delegate policy-making to a committee of elected members. The committee meets usually every two weeks.
The committee is elected year year at the Annual General Meeting. See the current list of officers and committee members
Department representatives and local contacts
We choose UCU department reps for our area of the university, including department reps to focus on particular areas: department anti-casualisation rep, department postgraduate rep, department workloads rep, department health and safety rep. Areas without a UCU rep often have a local contact. UCU department reps and local contacts are a point of contact for union members in that school, department, service or area, and they alert the branch committee to issues concerning members in their area. Department reps will try to welcome new staff and make sure they know about the union.
If you would like help or advice email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the branch administrator on 0113 343 5904 to arrange for a caseworker to get in touch with you.
For more about the support for UCU members, see the national union website: ucu.org.uk/support
UCU University of Leeds Branch rules are agreed by members at a general meeting. They’re ours and we can collectively change them if we want to at a general meeting, so long as they remain suitably consistent the model rules agreed by all members UCU’s national congress. Any member can propose a rule change in a motion to a general meeting. If you’d like advice on writing a rule change motion (or any motion) contact your department rep or the branch office.