UCU members at the University of Manchester
Trade unions UCU, Unison and Unite at the University of Manchester are preparing to fight to save hundreds of jobs. Over 300 staff attended a joint union meeting to discuss management threats.
The university is one of the city’s biggest employers. It has traditionally had relatively progressive policies on avoiding compulsory redundancies through redeployment and other measures.
These are now being torn up without consultation. It is a de facto derecognition of the campus unions, cynically using the summer break to start the process.
The initial priority is to defend 37 members of staff being taken off the redeployment register and threatened with redundancy, as well as 219 IT staff at risk due to proposed outsourcing. Other major reorganisations are on the horizon. The pattern is clear: loss of jobs, privatisation and more work for those who remain.
In the current consultative survey, and when a formal ballot is called, members should vote yes to action short of strike and yes to strike action. Only a programme of escalating industrial action can defeat these attacks.
It will also be important to link up with the student union, and provide a wider challenge to the Tory austerity policies that are driving cuts and marketisation in the sector.