“UCEA, on behalf of the 147 HE institutions it represents in the 2019 collective negotiations, is pleased that UCU will be in further dialogue with us this side of Christmas. Our next meeting, due to take place on Tuesday 17 December, will enable us to further explore some new sector-level joint work on the three key matters around workload, gender pay gaps / ethnicity pay and casual employment being pursued in UCU’s pay dispute campaign.
“All the participating HE institutions are committed to providing work environments where people feel valued, treated fairly and with respect. Following a consultation process it is positive that they are able to support UCEA in exploring some new sector level work with UCU. We hope that such work could inform some of the approaches they may consider and add value to the substantial efforts under way within institutions. They all expect to do this in a way that listens to and involves their staff representatives and many have highlighted to us the significant work already in place that is addressing these important areas.
“It is not possible for the individual universities to address the UCU pay demands while they remain committed to the 2019 collective arrangements. We share with them a concern that this fragmented UCU action over the pay round in just 56 institutions is creating pressure to unpick the national collective pay bargaining arrangements to which they are committed.
“UCU has once again said it wishes to speak about the pay uplift as well as the other elements of their dispute. We and the sector employers we represent acknowledge there will be pay implications that flow from actions in institutions on the three employment matters.
However, UCEA continues to be clear that the 147 universities provide no collective mandate to improve further on the above-inflation final pay offer that was made in April 2019.
“We hope that these further talks will enable us to develop approaches to the challenges in workload, gender pay gaps / ethnicity pay and casual employment. We would hope that the result of this dialogue on these important areas, alongside all that universities are doing, will be seen by UCU members as a route to resolving the current dispute without damaging the collective bargaining arrangements.”
Note: UCEA’s April offer (www.ucea.ac.uk/news-releases/1may19/) already included proposals for sector-level joint work on gender and ethnicity pay gaps, casual employment arrangements and workload, which built on successful joint work on these issues in previous years.
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