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Update from Vice-Chancellor: Industrial Action

All-Staff email in relation to Industrial Action

Dear Colleague

Following my previous email last week, you will be aware that the Universities and Colleges Union (UCU) have announced their intention to engage in a period of industrial action in the form of a strike starting this week.

The dates of the planned action are as follows:

  • Thursday 20 and Friday 21 February
  • Monday 24, Tuesday 25 and Wednesday 26 February
  • Monday 2, Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4 and Thursday 5 March
  • Monday 9, Tuesday 10, Wednesday 11, Thursday 12 and Friday 13 March

As things stand, there has been no significant change in the national negotiations, so we are working on the assumption that the period of industrial action will begin on Thursday as planned.

As I have mentioned previously, we appreciate that the decision to engage in industrial action is not taken lightly, and no members of staff wish to disrupt the education of our students. However, the central issues remain a national dispute and there is nothing that the University can do unilaterally to resolve these issues other than to reiterate that we, as employers, believe that the best way forward is to work collectively to find a resolution via the ongoing tripartite talks. We continue to work constructively with our local UCU colleagues to make positive progress on those issues that we can directly influence at Queen's such as gender pay gap, workload and casual contracts.

I recognise that if the strike action goes ahead, the next four weeks will be a challenging period for all concerned, particularly for those staff and students also affected by the recent round of strike action at the end of last year.

The University's immediate priority is to mitigate the impact on our students, and I would like to thank colleagues in advance for their support as we make every reasonable effort to ensure students are not disadvantaged. Interventions will be put in place at a local level to minimise the disruption for students and these will be tailored to meet the needs of individual Schools and Directorates.

Information and Support

Dedicated FAQs pages have been created to provide information and support to both staff and students and to help keep you up to date with the latest support and information. Please check these webpages regularly for updates:

If you have any queries in relation to industrial action, please visit the FAQs page or contact the HR Hub: hrhub@qub.ac.uk; extension 3000.

Thank you once again for your flexibility and commitment. I will continue to keep you informed of developments.

Best Wishes
Ian

Professor Ian Greer
President and Vice-Chancellor