Monday, 28 September 2009


Lobby the Board Of Governors Wed 30th September

Tower Building, Holloway Road, 5.00 p.m.

Students and staff, members of both UCU and UNISON, have fought for months to stop the devastation of our university. As a result the threatened job cuts have been significantly reduced, Sir David Melville is conducting an inquiry into the reasons for the financial crisis that led to this situation in the first place, and we have stopped the threatened outsourcing of IT and media services.

But significant numbers of staff still face compulsory redundancy and whoever is to blame for the financial mess management have made it clear that they want more job cuts next year. The unions have made it clear to management that as long as compulsory redundancies are threatened we will continue to do all we can to stop them.

Last week UCU’s General Secretary, Sally Hunt, told UCU members that if we stop compulsory redundancies now it will be more difficult for management to push them through in future so “now is the time to keep up the pressure”.

Meetings of both unions have voted that if management don’t withdraw the compulsory redundancies we will step up the action at the beginning of the new semester.

We also are demanding that the Governors agree to cut the £2m in bonuses paid to London Met’s senior management each year and use the money to save jobs.

  • No compulsory redundancies
  • No fat cat bonuses

Join the lobby on Wed

30th Sept – keep up the pressure!

The 4 week all-out strike at Tower Hamlets College has ended in victory. The strike has stopped all compulsory redundancies and prevented cuts to courses. London Met staff were amongst thousands who supported the strikers by visiting picket lines and donating to the strike fund. Tower Hamlets is a brilliant example of how to fight against cuts and redundancies. Speaker from Tower Hamlets invited to lobby.
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Tuesday, 22 September 2009

George rallies to the lecturers’ jobs cause

University board member a target for union action

GEORGE Galloway is expected to rally lecturers and staff of London Metropolitan University outside the offices of one of its board members today (Friday).

The Respect MP for Bethnal Green and Bow has been invited to join a demonstration outside the Kingston Smith city accountancy firm in Devonshire House, Goswell Road, Angel, from 1pm.

See here for demo details.

See here for rest of article.
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Friday, 18 September 2009

‘FIGHT FOR JOBS!’ – London Met delegate tells Congress

‘FIGHT FOR JOBS!’ – London Met delegate tells Congress
Delegates applauding the demonstration by Vestas sacked workers who were demanding that the plant be nationalised
THE TUC Congress in Liverpool was brought alive yesterday by a passionate call to fight for jobs with occupations by Mark Campbell of the University and College Union at London Metropolitan University.

He was speaking in support of Composite 3: Jobs, the Recession and Redundancy Rights.

Campbell said: ‘Redundancies should not be the cheap option for employers, yet for many employers they are often the first and only option they consider.

‘And it’s not just compulsory redundancies – we also have massive numbers of non-voluntary “voluntary redundancies’’, which are often reluctantly accepted when workers are threatened with the likely alternative of the paucity of statutory redundancy pay.

‘If that is not bad enough, some employers including my own, London Metropolitan University, have gone one step worse.

‘Staff are targeted and selected for compulsory redundancy (often on the flimsiest and most unreasonable grounds) and are then offered their actual weekly wage instead of the £350 a week statutory pay.

‘But only on the basis that they sign “gagging’’ orders and accept “compromise agreements’’.
‘This needs to be halted now.

‘We need actual weekly pay to be the minimum in terms of the calculation for statutory redundancy pay, and it needs to be available from day one of employment, not only after two years’ work.

‘However, UCU believes the strongest and most important statement of the motion is that noted by the TSSA amendment: “Congress congratulates those workers fighting to keep their jobs, including those taking action such as the occupation of workplaces in order to raise awareness and stop closures.

‘I would therefore like to use the remainder of my speech to offer my union’s heartfelt thanks to the following: the Vestas occupiers, the Thomas Cook occupiers, the Visteon occupiers, the Waterford Crystal occupiers and especially to our own members, now on their 14th day of all-out strike action, at Tower Hamlets College in east London.

‘All of these workers have taken the brave decision to stand up not just for themselves but for their communities.

‘So yes, we need to support this motion.

‘We need to make it harder and more expensive to make workers redundant.

‘But we need to take inspiration from those who have begun the fightback to save jobs.

‘We need to get off our knees as a trade union movement and match the resolve of those occupiers and strikers who have given a real lead to our movement.

‘And if Gordon Brown feels comfortable with using the “C’’ word, isn’t it time we felt comfortable using the “S’’ word and the “O’’ word.

‘Strike and occupy – save jobs, defend our community,’ he concluded to enthusiastic applause.

The motion was moved by Unite Joint General Secretary Tony Woodley.

He declared: ‘Spivs and speculators have made millions of pounds taking our economy over the edge, sacking bank workers and factory workers but putting little back into the economy to protect jobs.’

He demanded the government ‘nationalise the banks completely, not part nationalisation but take them over.’

He did not however demand the nationalisation of the Ellesmere Port and Luton GM factories where thousands of jobs are under threat, as well as the tens of thousands of jobs that depend on them.

Woodley called for short-time working for when the recovery begins.

He claimed: ‘The free market is in the past. Start intervention, public intervention.’

He concluded: ‘That’s the sort of Labour we are all proud of. Listen Gordon, before it’s too late.’

Earlier, Congress voted for Composite 1: Posted Workers Directive.

This was supported by the General Council with reservations concerning the Lisbon treaty.

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Thursday, 17 September 2009

Battle continues at London Met

Workers at London Metropolitan University look set to take further strike action in their fight against job cuts.

The cuts would slash up to a quarter of the posts at the London Met – putting the future of the university in jeopardy. Lecturers in the UCU union informally supported further strikes at union meetings last week and are due to meet on Wednesday of next week to decide on future action.

© Socialist Worker (unless otherwise stated). You may republish if you include an active link to the original.

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Monday, 14 September 2009

Lobby Michael Snyder - LMU Board of Governors

Speakers: George Galloway MP (invited), Tower Hamlets College striker, Sasha Callaghan (Former President UCU).

Friday 18 September 1 pm Outside Kingston Smith, Devonshire House, 60 Goswell Rd., London EC1M 7AD. (nearest tube Barbican).

Michael Snyder is the LMU Board Member who told us in 2007 that ‘City Fat-Cats Deserve Their Pay and Our Respect’. And now he’s one of those telling staff and students at London Met that we should pay for the mess that’s been made of the university finances with our jobs.

Join the lobby outside Michael Snyder’s office and let him know that we won’t go without a fight and that it’s the board and their friends in senior management who should pay for the mess they’ve landed the university in.

Organised by LMU UCU and UNISON Branches.
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Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Official "grey-listing" of London Met announced

Email from Sally Hunt, General Secretary of UCU, to all members 01/09/09

Dear colleague,
As you will know, I seldom email you directly and only do so when I feel that a situation is extremely important to our union. As such, it is with regret that I write to you today to formally notify you of the greylisting of London Metropolitan University (LMU). Those of you who have been in the union since its inception or were in one of the predecessor unions, AUT or NATFHE, will be aware that this is the most serious sanction available to us and this will be the first time in UCU's history when greylisting has been formally implemented rather then threatened (such as at Keele University and Nottingham Trent University).

As of today, 1 September, UCU will be asking colleagues across the country, other trade unions, labour movement organisations and the international academic community to support our members at the university in any way possible, including:

* non-attendance, speaking at or organising academic or other conferences at LMU
* not applying for any advertised jobs at LMU
* not giving lectures at LMU
* not accepting positions as visiting professors or researchers at LMU
* not writing for any academic journal which is edited at or produced by LMU
* not taking up new contracts as external examiners for taught courses.

Read the full email here...
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Campaign to "grey-list" London Met continues

from the East London Advertiser, 31/08/09

A NATIONWIDE campaign to boycott London’s biggest university over the threatened 550 redundancies is being launched this morning (Monday).

The UCU lecturers’ union is declaring the London Metropolitan the first university to be ‘grey listed’ in the embittered nine-month dispute.

The beleaguered institution was told by the union in June that it would become the first to suffer an academic boycott following deadlocked negotiations.

Resolving the matter before tomorrow (Tuesday) looks unlikely, the union said today, as the dispute at Aldgate, Whitechapel, Moorgate and the main campus in Holloway drags on into its ninth month.

So it is pushing ahead with its ‘grey listing’, asking colleagues across the country and the international academic community to support the boycott.

The London Met, which has 34,000 students, was hit by a £15 million reduction in its yearly Whitehall grant at the end of last year, while repayment demands totalling £36m were made by the Government’s Higher Education Funding Council. It followed incorrect submissions of student completion records by the university.

Read the full story here...
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