The full minutes of the meeting will be emailed to members and a copy will be available from the honorary secretary or branch administrator.
Members agreed the following motions.
Motion 1: Defend the right to a private life and academic freedom
UCU Notes that Council Paper CL/20/74 (27 May 2021):
- Summarises an investigation by the UoL of an event which ‘did not take place under the formal auspices of the University’, ie. an event under the aegis of groups ‘not associated with the University of Leeds or LUU’.
- Seeks ‘to develop and implement clear guidance on the appropriate use of designations and/or affiliation of University of Leeds roles (e.g. member of staff or student of the University) in non-University public events’. In so doing the University breaks custom and practice.
UCU contends that:
- UoL Council has no authority or standing in presuming to preside over individuals’ private lives.
- In presuming to uphold a recommendation that may limit academic freedom and freedom of speech, Council’s predominantly non-academic and lay membership was not suitably qualified to understand the issues in front of it.
- The UoL decision would set a dangerous precedent for the entire HE sector.
UCU demands that:
- Council retracts the deeply flawed Council Report CL/20/74, and accordingly also the Scott enquiry report of which the Council Report is a summary.
- Council desists from making decisions on academic freedom and freedom of expression without due process, such as Senate scrutiny and negotiation with the UCU.
- Council desists from making decisions in spheres over which it has no authority, including the private lives, political beliefs and personal activities of staff and students.
In every dispute about personal behaviour, both sides should be heard.
Motion 3 – Digital Working group
This branch agrees to set up a Digital Working Group, to consider digital working, digital transformation, online work and related issues. The Group will make recommendations and report to the branch committee. The Group will be convened by a committee member and open to all members to join.
This page was last updated on 7 July 2021