Higher Education Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) data

Conference notes that good data is an important element in driving equality change. Data on its own is just information – it changes nothing. But it can provide evidence of failure and success and of change over time. For example, robust data has been vital in UNISON’s work, through the Joint Negotiating Committee for Higher […]

Fair pay in universities

Conference believes that there is an inherent unfairness in the way in which our universities are being run, and the way in which the most senior staff are being rewarded whilst UNISON members and staff working in support services are paying the price. Recent research in the Guardian revealed that among 17 university heads who […]

Pay and the Impact on Black Staff

Conference notes that staff, particularly Black staff have seen their living standards fall in recent years and many earn less than the living wage. A Trade Union Congress (TUC) report conducted in 2016 showed that Black workers face a “massive pay gap” which widens as they achieve more qualifications. The research by the TUC suggested […]

Brexit and our European Unions (EU) colleagues

Colleagues may recall the lacklustre support by the UK Universities for any position during the Brexit Referendum despite UNISON’s call to Vice Chancellors (VCs) to take a position to support EU staff and students. There are 45,000 EU citizens working in the Higher Education sector in the UK (11% of the Higher Education (HE) workforce) […]

No to a Hard Brexit

Our political landscape has become dominated by the referendum decision to leave the European Union. Whatever the specific position in January 2018, there are particular principles which will defend the rights and freedoms of both UK and EU nationals working in Higher Education (HE). At the time of writing we have not seen full details […]

Higher Education Role Analysis (HERA)

Conference notes that it has been some years since HERA was introduced as the tool for role analysis in the majority of UK universities as part of the National Framework Agreement. As part of that many UNISON activists were trained and accredited as HERA Role Analysts to support members wishing to have their roles evaluated, […]

Higher Education as a Public Service

Conference notes that: The history of degree level education provision in the UK is long and complex, but current and recent changes are fundamentally shifting the scenario in which our members work. As a trade union which organises public sector workers, we find our particular Service Group having to deal with the consequences of delivering […]

Putting Vice Chancellors’ (VC) Pay in Perspective

Conference notes that: The Higher Education sector is perhaps the best example of a few individuals enriching themselves from public funds. It is true that many leaders of public institutions are receiving vast incomes for their contributions, but VC pay has captured the headlines since a) students are amassing colossal debts to access Higher Education […]

Higher Education Service Group Executive Accountability

Conference welcomes the motion “Member-led Democracy” passed (as amended) at last year’s conference, which committed the Higher Education Service Group Executive (HESGE) to publish information about votes on significant issues. Conference also recognises the contribution made by HESGE members who, alongside all elected lay reps, consistently give their time to further the interests of all […]

No to excessive pay awards for Vice Chancellors and senior managers

This conference notes with concern and anger the current trend in Higher Education to gift Vice Chancellors (VCs) and other senior managers with obscene salaries. Times Higher Education reports that VCs at half of UK universities earned around five times the average (mean) salary of academic staff in 2015-16, and over the last few years […]

Higher Education (HE) and Voter Registration

Conference should note the significant role played by young people mobilising to vote in the last general election. UNISON activists in Higher Education played a role in this significant development by taking part in voter registration drives on their campuses around the country. Despite years of the assumption that apathy was endemic, the turnout of […]

Keeping on a campaign footing

Conference notes and very much welcomes the fact that not only did the Labour Party stand in the last election with policies very much in keeping with many of those set by our members at numerous UNISON conferences, but that those policies proved to be very popular. The future removal of a Tory government now […]

The experience of Black people in Higher Education (HE) institutions

Conference notes with alarm and concern the steady decrease in numbers of first-time applicants to university which has decreased by 5% for UK students and 7% for the EU students. These figures are particularly concerning when broken down by age group where we will find the number of 19-year-old applicants has fallen by 9%, 20-year-olds […]

All University Staff are Important

Conference believes that the biggest asset a University has is its staff – all of its staff. It is important that the University invests in this resource as simply put; without its staff there would be no University. Furthermore, Conference fully believes that the quality of the student experience is strongly linked not just to […]

BrHExit

Conference notes that existing UNISON policy states that Exiting of the European Union (EU) must not allow racists and xenophobes to use borders to divide workers. The ‘right to remain’ for EU workers and freedom of movement must be defended. Workers united in solidarity together are stronger in defending and promoting our interests across Europe. […]