HE PAY BALLOT: HAVE YOU RETURNED YOUR VOTE

To help us monitor turnout, please let us know you have voted.

This information will be used solely in order to monitor progress towards the threshold, and to inform our “get the vote out” activities – we are not asking for details of how you voted.

Either use the survey at http://unisonshu.org.uk/ls/payvote, or email dan@unisonshu.org.uk

The deadline for receipt of all ballots is Thursday 25th October.  If you have not received a ballot, there is still time to call the UNISON helpline on 0800 0857 857.

For more information see UNISON’s HE Pay website: https://www.unison.org.uk/at-work/education-services/about/higher-education/higher-education-ballot

A  pay  calculator,  to  help  you  work  out  how  much  your  pay  has  fallen  behind  is  here: https://unsn.uk/HEpaycalculator18

 

UNISON COURSES FOR MEMBERS

 Assertiveness Workshop   9 November 2018

This one day workshop will help you to:

• Understand the meaning of assertive, passive and aggressive behaviour,

• Consider the nature and impact of behaviour on ourselves and on others,

• Practise a more assertive approach to a range of situations,

• Speak with more confidence.

Cost to Branch: FREE

Member Learning Weekend – 24-25 November 2018

(apply by 22 October 2018, places subject to availability)

1 night Residential at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, Leeds

Cost to branches: FREE

To Apply

 Download an application form at:- http://www.unison-yorks.org.uk/education.html.  Application forms must then be approved by your branch; please email unisonadministrator@shu.ac.uk.

 

PRE-RETIREMENT WORKSHOP

Fri 7 December 2018 (Apply by: 5 November 2018)

Non-residential at UNISON Regional Centre, Commerce House, Leeds

This workshop, run by True Bearing Chartered, will make you aware of your choices and aid you in your decision making around retirement.

Is this workshop for me?

If you are retiring imminently or considering retiring within the next 18 months and want to be informed of the issues affecting your retirement you need to plan for your next phase of life.

By the end of the workshop you will be able to:

• Create your own route path from the world of work to the world of retirement,

• Identify changes in both pensions and financial regulations which will affect your retirement decisions,

• Identify the long term issues affecting your retirement,

• Identify personal and lifestyle actions which will help to improve your retirement,

• Start the process of planning for a successful retirement.

At True Bearing Chartered we can provide you with comprehensive independent financial advice to improve your financial security.

Cost to Branches: £10

If you would like to attend please email unisonadministrator@shu.ac.uk

 

BRANCH WELFARE SCHEME

When a member has been off work due to illness for six weeks or more our branch would like to send a card to wish them well and to remind them of the support services UNISON offer.

As part of the scheme we also offers a welfare gift to the member with the choice of one of the following gifts: chocolates, flowers or a fruit/veg box.

If you know of a UNISON member in your area who is off sick please let us know by  emailing unisonadministrator@shu.ac.uk  with their name and we will get in touch.

MAKING YOUR VOICE HEARD for women in UNISON

Saturday 10 November 2018

This one day event is ideal for women to build their skills and confidence to be more active in the union and everyday life.

It is an informal event open to all women UNISON members, covering:

  • Confidence & Assertiveness skills
  • How UNISON works
  • Building women’s involvement in UNISON
  • Writing and presenting motions for conferences
  • Everyday negotiating skills
  • Women inspiring Women

To attend – please ask your branch to send a completed education form to: Joanne Turnbull, Commerce House, Wade Lane, Leeds, LS2 8NJ or by e-mail to j.turnbull@unison.co.uk

Cost £25.00 (expenses to be met by branches)

Creche can be provided on request

Higher Education Pay Offer 2018/19

What’s the issue?

As you may have seen in recent updates, Unison has been in discussion with other Higher Education unions about the employers’ pay offer for 2018/19. Here’s what the unions asked for and what was offered by employers:

 

Joint unions’ pay claim: Employers’ pay offer:
7.5% or £1,500 + a minimum wage of £10 per hour

 

2% or £425 (full time) whichever is higher

 

 

Due to the employers’ offer being significantly less than what was requested by all unions, Unison’s Higher Education Service Group Executive (HESGE) are recommending that members reject the employers’ offer.

How does this affect you?

  • The offer made by employers amounts to a real terms pay cut, inflation is higher than the 2% proposal
  • We have had several years of below inflation pay rises and yet living costs continue to rise, this offer does not address this
  • In the current climate, we are facing staff cuts in several areas of the University, which means we are facing an increase in workload without a meaningful pay increase

What happens next?

The Sheffield Hallam University Unison Branch will be running a consultative ballot which will be open for 3 weeks from Monday 9th July – Monday 30th July. This isn’t a ballot for industrial action; it is your chance to tell the branch what you think about the pay offer.

The more members that vote, the more accurately we can represent the views of this branch, so please look out for further details and do take part.

 

 

 

 

 

UCU PENSION DISPUTE UPDATE

In March we emailed to thank you for your contributions to the hardship fund of our striking colleagues at The University of Sheffield, who were fighting against the proposed changes to the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) pension fund. Our collection at the branch AGM raised £134.57 and £25 in food vouchers, and the Branch Committee passed an emergency motion to send a further £250. These funds were prioritised to striking UCU members at Sheffield undergoing financial hardship during the dispute – primarily lecturers on ‘casual’ contracts and postgraduate students with teaching responsibilities.

In April we received the following message of thanks from the UCU branch president at Sheffield:

On behalf of Sheffield UCU I would like to express our sincere thanks for your donation to the local strike hardship fund.  Your solidarity is much appreciated and we would want to reciprocate should your branch have a future need.

The dispute ended on 13th April with 64% of the affected members voting to accept an offer from Universities UK. The offer promised the convening of a ‘Joint Expert Panel’ to ‘agree key principles to underpin the future joint approach of UUK and UCU to the valuation of the USS fund’ and to explore alternative scheme designs with a view to preserving the Defined Benefit scheme. For now at least, the proposed move to Defined Contribution has been taken off the table.

However many branches – including Sheffield – are deeply unhappy about the offer negotiated by the UCU Higher Education Committee and Leadership.  The failure to secure a ‘no detriment’ clause, the proposed Joint Expert Panel’s lack of transparency, and what some view as the tacit promotion of the UUK offer by UCU leadership led a number of branches to try and unseat the General Secretary at UCU’s national conference this month. This effort resulted in some fraught scenes and ultimately did not succeed, but controversy around the leadership’s perceived failure of its members is unlikely to go away.

Despite these current difficulties, it is important to recognise what our UCU colleagues have achieved. In what was possibly the biggest ever strike in UK Higher Education, UCU members managed to unite lecturers, support staff and students in opposition to the proposals. Public support remained high throughout the dispute, and – remarkably even the Conservative Universities Minister failed to condemn the action when given the chance.

In the longer term the successful action has showcased the financial viability of shared Defined Benefit schemes, and also hopefully warded off any immediate questions around post-92 universities’ participation in TPS and LGPS. A change in the law is required to remove our right to access these schemes, however calls for ‘fairness’ and parity with USS would undoubtedly have been used against us if the strike had failed. The strike also symbolised for many a strong rejection of the continued marketisation of Higher Education.

The branch extends its best wishes and thanks to our UCU colleagues, for their courageous defence of our employment rights.