Negotiations are at a crucial stage. We need pickets out in great numbers.
Thank you so much for all the strength you have put into the action over the last few days. The weather has been shocking, public transport a nightmare, and yet we have seen lots of cheerful and, most importantly, determined picketers every day – and many more a visible presence online.
We need to keep up the pressure and grow the action. Because of what we have done so far, UCU’s negotiators were back in negotiations with the employers’ body UCEA today, on the anti-casualisation, workloads, equal pay and pay dispute. They are back in ‘without prejudice’ talks which means they are not able to share details about what was discussed, but we understand the meeting went on much longer than it was supposed to, which has to be a good sign!
The next couple of days are, therefore, crucial. Please come out to picket if you can – if you don’t live in Leeds you can give support to a picket at a university closer to you. Here’s the picket sign-up form (for University of Leeds branch).
If you can’t picket, please be as loud and visible on social media as you can (#UCUstrikesback), and use this tool to make your views known to the Vice-Chancellor https://www.ucu.org.uk/strikeback-speakout
If you’ve been checking your university email, you might have seen on Friday that the university sent round an open letter from UCEA and UUK to all staff. Today, we have written a response, which makes clear where our issues lie and, in particular, where we think the previous offer needs improvement – we very much hope that these are the issues which are being discussed ! Please read it and share widely: http://www.leedsucu.org.uk/open-letter-from-ucea-and-uuk-leeds-university-ucus-response/