Solidarity with Sussex Protests

sussex demo

Students and staff at Sussex University have been protesting against management plans to outsource 10% of the university’s workforce. A group of students have occupied the top floor of the university’s conference centre since February and held a demonstration last week.

Yesterday, Sussex University management filed a high court injunction that bans protest and occupations on campus until September – criminalising the student occupation.

Defend the Right to Protest have set up an online petition calling on the management to revoke the injunction: http://chn.ge/ZpQlic

Please join us in showing solidarity in the struggle against privatisation in education, and in defending the right to protest, by signing this petition and sharing it among friends and colleagues:
http://chn.ge/ZpQlic

General Meeting 14 March 2013

UCU GM Mar2013 2

The next General Meeting will take place on Thursday 14. Mar in RHB 141, at 1pm.

It is really important we have a good turn-out for this meeting, particularly as Michael MacNeill, head of Higher Education at UCU, will be attending as a guest speaker.

This will also be our opportunity to vote on motions for UCU congress. The two motions that have been proposed by members at Goldsmiths are given below:

1. Motion to support the People’s Assembly against Austerity

This branch notes:

That the government has introduced the most far-reaching programme of cuts and austerity for 90 years. We have seen pay cuts across the public sector, the marketisation of the NHS and swingeing cuts in welfare, public services and housing including, most recently, the ‘bedroom tax’ – all of which will hit the poorest section of the population the hardest.

That, in opposition to the government’s austerity programme, a number of unions and anti-cuts organisations have supported the call for a People’s Assembly against Austerity that aspires to build a movement for social justice and develop a strategy for resistance to the cuts.

That the assembly will provide a national forum to develop links between unions, community-based campaigns and anti-cuts groups to build the confidence and organisation of all those opposed to austerity.

This branch agrees:

To support the call for the People’s Assembly at Central Hall Westminster on Saturday 22 June 2013 and to send 5 delegates.

Proposed: Des Freedman

2. Motion against the Threat to Education Departments in HE

Congress notes:

– The drastic cut in ITE places in universities as a result of government policy to sever links between HE Education departments and schools, despite evidence that HEI-led partnerships offer the most effective route into teaching.
– The threat of significant redundancies in HE Education departments and wider consequences for HEIs.
– The deprofessionalisation of teachers and teacher educators that results from the government’s view of teaching as a craft.

Congress resolves to:

– Conduct a national audit of branches to find out the effect of cuts in numbers on staff, courses and research in Education departments and across universities;
– Launch a campaign on the defence of Education departments with immediate effect;
– Urgently organise a dialogue with other education unions on this policy and formulate and publicise a joint position and campaign strategy;
– Widely publicise a critical analysis of government policy on ITE.

Proposed: Clare Kelly & Maggie Pitfield

Please do save the date and keep other members informed, as this will be a very important meeting and without a quorum we will not be able to make progress on key issues.