SOAS members secure victory against compulsory redundancies

Planned strike action saw management agree to return to talks and offer workers redeployment deal

UNISON members working at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) are celebrating this week after victory in their fight to halt compulsory redundancies.

The redundancies at the school, which is part of the University of London, were set to happen at the end of this month as part of a restructure.

In response to planned strike action for today and tomorrow, following online branch meetings (pictured), SOAS management has agreed to return to the negotiating table.

Management has made the commitment to UNISON that there will be no compulsory redundancies for professional services staff, including cleaning, catering, administrative and library workers.

UNISON regional organiser Boyana Petrovich said: “This victory is a testament to what can be achieved with good branch organisation and willingness of members to go the extra mile to protect their rights.

“Hopefully, it will inspire activists across the country as our members need them to organise and negotiate with the employers now more than ever.”

Workers who were facing redundancy will now be offered an extended redeployment period, during which time they will receive individualised support and development training to help them find alternative employment within the new SOAS structure.

In the coming weeks, UNISON will be launching a new Fair Workload campaign to ensure that all SOAS staff have manageable workloads and are appropriately remunerated for the duties they perform in the new structure.