Strike Declarations – FAQ

  • Updated Monday 20 December 2021

  1. Do we need to complete the spreadsheet with information about scheduled teaching activities that some HoDs have sent around?

No, as there is no legal obligation to fill in these spreadsheets. Declarations should be made to the college in the forms indicated here. We recommend sending one postcard declaring one day per month in the post addressed to the Warden.

If asked to confirm a departmental spreadsheet, members could respond as follows, if they wish: “I can confirm that I participated in strike action / I will be declaring my specific days of participation to college in due course / I am not under any obligation to take part in verifying a spreadsheet of strike action”.

  1. Can they really deduct all strike time in one month?

Yes, if days of participation in industrial action are declared all at once. This is why GUCU is advising its members to spread the days of their participation in the strike across a number of months and declare one day per month if they wish.

  1. Can our VLE messages to students be taken by management as declarations?

No. Declarations cannot be inferred by managers. Declarations should be made only after an official request by the college and in forms indicated here. Please also be advised that there is no obligation to use the university HR self-declaration form.

  1. If I am an AL or a fractional, should I declare all 15 days of the strikes, or only those I would have been teaching?

ALs, hourly paid staff, and staff on fractional contracts should declare only the days they were supposed to teach/work. If you declare more days than you are contracted to work, the employer would be deducting more money than you are normally paid and this would be illegal. 

  1. I understand that there is no time limit for declaring but that we must respond honestly if asked. I am planning to declare one or two days at a time but what if I get a response to my email asking ‘but were you also on strike for other days as well?’ Can I leave it e.g. a month or two to answer that email, legally?

Yes, as to the best of our knowledge there is no statutory time limit on declaring your strike days for pay deductions in UK law.

  1. Would declaring piecemeal and slowly compromise students’ ability to claim their fees back? 

SMT are claiming that they need us to declare in order to help with student refunds. However, this is an entirely misleading argument. Student refunds are not connected to the ways in which staff declare their participation in strike action. Students claim refunds through the college complaints process and are supported by the Student Union in doing so.

  1. Is the national fund only for the 3 days of the 4 fights? Or can it be used for the whole strike?

No, applications to the national funds can be used in regard to our local dispute as well. 

  1. If we want to claim from the three different strike funds (national, local, mutual aid) we must have declared within 3 months (of the strike ending?) in order to be able to claim from the fund?

Applications to the national fund must be completed within three months from the last day of industrial dispute. The final day of the latest industrial dispute was the 13th of December. Thus, applications to the national strike fund must be completed within the 13th of March 2022. 

There is no time limit to apply to the other two strike funds (local fund, mutual aid fund). Extended information about accessing financial support during the 2021 industrial action can be found here.