UCU national website has guidance on working from home and teaching online.
The university advice on homeworking during the pandemic says “Working from home expenses, such as internet provision … will not be covered by the University.”
UCU branch officers advise you contact your line manager or head of school or service if you need any equipment to work from home. The IT team is sending some IT equipment out by courier, according to the priorities set by heads of school or service. The university won’t give general approval for everyone to buy what they need and claim it back, so we are advising members that if you feel you need some equipment, you should get prior agreement from your line manager or head of school or service that the cost will be reimbursed, before you buy it, so you don’t risk being out of pocket.
The home working arrangements are still being seen as “temporary”, which is why the university is saying not to complete the usual display screen equipment workstation assessment, but clearly we all need a decent set-up to work in which isn’t going to cause us health problems. Here’s the advice from the university’s Wellbeing, Health and Safety team. If you experience health problems from your home working setup, or believe you are likely to, then you should tell your line manager that you will have to restrict your working hours. This is particularly important if you have ‘reasonable adjustments’ at the workplace to enable you to work safely but don’t have the same in place at home.
We hope that line managers and heads of schools and services will respond positively to requests from staff so everyone can get on with the work they want to do without causing themselves harm.
We’ve also asked the university to contribute towards household bills for staff working from home. HMRC allow up to £26 unreceipted for this. Senior management says they’re not considering this at the moment because they don’t think it is cost-effective use of their money, but we will keep pressing for this.