Historic pay and casualisation deal at London CCCG FE colleges

Congratulations to UCU members at CCCG. This is a brilliant victory by your members. Staff working in FE are among the lowest paid in the education sector. This award, alongside the fractionalisation agreement is an important step in ensuring staff are valued for the vital work they do. Congratulations to the governing body in agreeing this bold and progressive step forward and I hope this signals a change in direction that the whole sector can follow.

In Solidarity

— John McDonnell MP, shadow chancellor

wkcDear Colleagues

UCU branches met today across the Capital City College Group (CCCG – City and Islington College, Westminster Kingsway College and the College of North East London) and agreed to settle on the 2018/19 pay claim. After several weeks of negotiations, the governors have agreed a pay offer of 5% to all staff in the group who earn less than £55k. Senior managers that earn between £56k up to £76k will be awarded 3% and those earning £76k+ will not get a pay increase this year.

The CEO has waived his right to an annual bonus.

The 5% award will be back-dated to September and is worth up to £2K pa which works out as up to £140 per month take home and will be put into the December pay packet. This will mean staff should expect up to £600 extra in their December pay packets.

This is an historic deal which will, we hope, give other colleges the confidence to follow. CCCG is the largest group in London and the third largest in the country. Continue reading


Report back from Resisting the Market conference

Resisting the Market, Uniting for: Pay, Pensions, Democracy, Equality and Justice

Organised by UCU Transformed, UCU Left, Branch Solidarity Network and OurUCU

Saturday 13 October 2018

This was an inspiring conference bringing people together who have fought for pensions and pay and campaigned to reclaim their university, are fighting precarity, oppose racism on campus and want to bring all staff in-house.

100 people attended from around 50 university and college branches.

mark abel

Most of the day was made up of workshops hosted from a diversity of campaigns. The day ended with a general assembly and discussion of the success of the pensions and pay campaigns and how to win the coming battles including the pay ballot closing on the 19th.


Deepa DriverThe morning workshops included a meeting on USS: Where next after the JEP report? The session was run by a USS Briefs team including Felicity Callard, Jo Grady, Jaya John, Deepa Driver (left) and Carlo Morelli, national negotiator.

There was a very informative presentation on Adult Education, Devolution and Apprenticeships. Forogh Rahmani, a senior policy advisor from the London Mayor’s office, outlined how they were preparing for the devolution of adult funding. It was refreshing to be in a dialogue with policy makers who are listening and want to engage with unions. A link will be available here to the presentation. Continue reading

What next after the JEP: how can we build the pay fight?

London Region UCU Open Activist Meeting

Pensions and Pay – What next after the JEP and how can we build the pay fight?

Monday 17 September, 6.30pm

Room 1.20, Engineering Building, University College London
Entrance opposite Waterstones/ULU on Torrington Place. Nearest tube Goodge St.
Map and directions

All members welcome

This meeting is for members in Further and Higher Education to hear about the USS dispute and to discuss how we unite the union to fight over pay.

The report of the USS Joint Expert Panel has been published at www.ussjep.org.uk

USS branches are strongly encouraged to organise local meetings next week to discuss the report and next steps in the campaign.

UCU London Region has called a meeting for Monday 17 September for colleagues from all parts of the HE sector to discuss what the report means and to debate next steps in the campaign.

With ballots taking place over pay in both Higher and Further Education, one logical conclusion is that any cost increase imposed over pension costs should be billed to the employers in the pay campaign.

Useful links


UCU’s National Executive Committee (NEC) meets for the first time since Congress this Friday.

We lost two days of Congress – effectively the whole of the union’s democratic policy-setting opportunity for an entire year – as a result of manoeuvres by sections of the union leadership to avoid criticism for their handling of the HE pension dispute. The furore has raised serious questions among many members regarding the accountability and transparency of our union leadership.

At the #UCUTransformed meeting called by London Region UCU on Saturday 9 June, union reps from across the country met to discuss the crisis. One of the conclusions of that meeting was that UCU needs to resolve this issue promptly and firmly by confirming that all elected representatives, including the General Secretary, are subject to criticism and recall by motions of censure and no confidence. The NEC has to take control of the situation and defend union democracy.

London Region UCU has called a lobby of the NEC meeting on Friday from 10:15 to 11 at UCU HQ in Carlow Street, Mornington Crescent, Camden. All branches are welcome to send delegates.

NEC members committed to a democratic member-led union will be meeting outside at that time for an open air meeting and colleagues are welcome to join them.


#UCUTransformed : After Congress….Where Next? National Meeting Report

#UCUtransformed meeting (1 of 1).jpg

On Saturday 9th June, around 80 UCU members, all but one or two of whom attended this year’s congress two weeks ago, came together in London for a meeting to discuss After UCU Congress…where next?

The meeting was called by London Region’s #UCUTransformed, agreed by 130 Congress delegates who met on the evening of the first staff walkout, and was supported by Branch Solidarity Network.

Members came from branches all over the country: universities of Edinburgh, Bournemouth, Leeds and Leeds Beckett, Liverpool, Lancaster, Brighton, York, Kent, Oxford, Cambridge, Hertfordshire, Royal Holloway, SOAS, Imperial, Kings College, Central School of Speech and Drama, City, St Georges, Reading, Queen Mary, London Met, LSBU, Roehampton, Westminster, Writtle University College, Sheffield Hallam, Goldsmiths; colleges of Bourneville, Epping Forest, Westminster Kingsway, Tower Hamlets, Lewisham Southwark, Lambeth, Hackney, North West London, Redbridge, Croydon, City and Islington; Sutton and Hackney Adult Education; South West Region, London Region and Yorkshire and Humberside Retired Members branches; and Disabled Members and Black Members committees.

The discussion was centred around the fallout of the staff walkouts, the refusal to allow motions 10 & 11 to be heard, the shutting down of congress and how the issue of democracy links to the campaigns on pay, pensions and equality in HE and FE.

There was a wide-ranging and serious debate about how to respond to the aftermath of Congress and was conducted in a calm, thoughtful way as members sought to find a way forward on issues by engaging with each others’ contributions, processing arguments and suggestions and building organically towards some jointly agreed outcomes and proposals.

Key discussions centred around:

* the importance of intertwining the pay, pensions and Equality campaigns in both sectors with the issue of democracy and who runs our union, which arose from the mass pickets, teach outs, lobbies, marches, strikes committees etc. And that it’s our collective activity that allows democracy to flourish and gives us power to hold the leadership to account

* getting as many branches a possible to at least support hearing motions 10 & 11, whilst recognising many more will want to call for resignation of the General Secretary,

* How we overcome the division in the union between the leadership and members

There was general agreement on recognising the importance of challenging the GS and linking the campaign for democracy with the struggles over pay, pensions and Equality and, through this, building new democratic structures from below.

The meeting voted to take forward the following ideas and practical proposals:

– counter the post-congress emails to all members from Sally Hunt with the majority view held by #OurUCU

– send a note of condolence to the family of our HE comrade Dr Malcolm Anderson of Cardiff  University https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/university-tutor-died-after-silently-14751533

– collate questions to the GS that we need answers to and publish on the #OurUCU website

– ask as many branches as possible to pass the model motion calling for motions 10 & 11 to be heard, and to submit to NEC members

– build the lobby of NEC, called by London Region on Friday 22nd June at 10.30am outside UCU Head Office, Carlow St. “Allow dissent to be heard”

– demand that we get a GTVO campaign from HQ on HE and FE pay like the one for the USS campaign

– call for a discussion on having a layer of officials who are elected, as in other unions

– call a London Briefing on pay

– organise twinning of branches. More organised with less so, and cross sector

– ask for an ‘organogram’ of who does what at HQ

– request for UCU, not Unite, to staff the recall conference

– request a mechanism for NEC reps to contact, and be contacted by, their constituencies

– broaden the discussion by speaking to local Trade Union councils and other unions about our disputes

– find out how we can put motions passed at congress into action

– explore possibility of changes to motion 10 (Note: technically this can’t be done as the motion is already submitted to congress)

– get as many branches as possible to register for the Special HE Sector conference (SHESC) on 21st June. The closing date for registrations is 5pm on 13th June. Link to register is here: https://www.ucu.org.uk/hescjune18

– get as many branches as possible to the FE Pay National Activist meeting on 29th June in Manchester. Details to follow.

The meeting also agreed to hold a further meeting in October which unites all the groupings under one roof – #UCUTransformed, Branch Solidarity Network, UCULeft, #OurUCU etc.

Thanks to all the branches and delegations who supported this meeting.

Post Congress Meeting, 9 June

After Congress: what next for UCU?

Open National Meeting for UCU members

Saturday 9 June, 2pm

Venue: G22 Lecture Theatre, Pearson Building, UCL.

The Pearson Building is in the UCL quad on the left as you enter. The entrance to the building is in the North corner of the quad.

Map | Nearest tube: Euston Square.
After the fallout of UCU Congress on Wednesday 30 May, 130 UCU delegates met and it was agreed that London Region UCU would call a National Meeting as soon as possible on:

  • UCU democracy
  • Campaigning in our sectors, how to build on motions passed at HE and FE sector conferences
  • What kind of union we want

After a year of transformative industrial action, UCU members are demanding discussion on where next for our disputes and union.

The strike action taken by UCU members in HE in defence of USS pensions has been inspirational. Some 40,000 lecturers, academic related staff, researchers and support staff have struck across 64 institutions. After a year of industrial  16,000 people have joined UCU. Many of these new members  are BAME, women and young members starting out their careers.

In FE colleges are involved in a campaign of escalating strike action in defence of their pay and conditions. There are another 146 branches that have submitted 168 claims to their employers that could form a second wave of action. This is 50% of all FE bargaining units across the UK. The claims range from, pay, casualisation, equal pay and workloads.

Hosted by London Region UCU. All UCU members welcome.

For clarity, this meeting will follow on from the London Region meeting which takes place the same day at Carlow Street.

Best wishes
Mandy Brown
UCU London Regional Secretary