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University and College Union

The Open University branch of the University and College Union

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Lobbying the Welsh Senedd

We’ve been successfully lobbying the Welsh Senedd. Now we have been invited to present at an indoor event on the 23rd March, to explain our disputes on pensions, pay and conditions and the impact that poor working conditions for university staff will have on students.

21st March 2022

External examiners - resigning in protest

Members of the UCU branch at Queen Mary, University of London (QMUCU) are currently without any pay because their employer is docking 100% of salary for 'partial performance' for Action Short of a Strike - for those lecturers who refuse to reschedule classes that were cancelled during strike action.

18th March 2022

UCU meeting on Pensions with Sam Marsh

UCU's Pension Negotiator Sam Marsh will give a presentation on the current USS situation on Thursday 17 March at 1pm via Teams. This is an open meeting and all university colleagues are welcome, you will need to be logged into the OU website. 

16th March 2022
UCU strike logo

Strike! Strike! Strike! New wave of strike action 21st-27th March

OU UCU members are taking part in national UCU action in two separate disputes:

  • over devastating cuts to USS pensions
  • and over falling pay and the employers' refusal to address pay gap, precarious employment and unsafe workloads.

UCU's higher education committee has called further waves of strike action in both the USS and Four Fights disputes which will ensure that the disruption continues across the sector until the end of term.

16th March 2022
bell hooks

International Women's Day seminar: bell hooks

UCU, the OU's BME staff network and Women@OU are jointly presenting a 60-minute lunchtime seminar to celebrate the life and work of Gloria Jean Watkins (aka bell hooks). 

The seminar will be on International Women's Day, 8th March at 1pm in our Adobe connect room, please email ucu@open.ac.uk if you would like to attend. 

bell hooks passed away 15th December 2021 from kidney failure and her death leaves a huge hole in our society. Her body of work includes academic books, children's books and documentaries to name a few:

24th February 2022
UCU petition

We call upon Open University to resolve pension and pay disputes

Have you signed our petition which calls upon the OU to resolve the pension and pay disputes?

Any friend of the OU can sign this petition so please feel free to share the link widely.


17th February 2022
UCU Industrial action February 2022

Poetry Competition

We have launched a Valentine’s day poetry/ditty competition – send your entry to ucu@open.ac.uk and there will be a Book token prize awarded to the best poem/ditty at the end of the industrial action. Entries will be judged by the branch Executive committee. 

The closing date is 5pm on 2nd March 2022.

Here's an example: 

Violets are blue,
roses are red,
the gender pay gap is messing with my head.

15th February 2022
University and College Union #OneOfUsAllOfUs

Take action, make change

Academic related staff members Amy Ryall and David Conway explain we need to take collective action between the 14th February and 2nd March 2022.

1st February 2022
Stamp out casual contracts

UCU's Anti-Casualisation Annual meeting 26 February 2022

If you are on a casualised contract, or have an interest UCU's work on behalf of those who are, you may be interested in attending UCU's annual meeting on 26th February, view further information.  Members can attend as branch delegates, or self-register. Priority is given to branch delegates, but self-registering delegates nearly always get a place.

7th January 2022

Branch Hardship fund has been opened

We have now opened the branch hardship fund - there's guidance, FAQs and an application form on the Hardship fund page

UCU members risk their pay being docked for the December wave of industrial action during the USS and Pay/Equality disputes.  Whilst UCU is not able to give assistance to all members taking strike action, the union offers the financial support both nationally and locally for members at risk of serious hardship. UCU members must ensure they are paying subscriptions at the correct rate in order to be eligible. 

20th December 2021

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