Protect Education for staff and students
Principal Lecturer, Computer Science, University of Westminster, and NATFHE/UCU activist since 1993.
I am H&S rep at London Region and previously UK-elected NEC member from the post-92 sector. When I was at NEC, I fought hard to ensure that members’ concerns were heard and appropriate actions were taken. Motions I submitted included the defence of post-92 contract maxima, the need for TPS-related member support and in defence of the BLM movement.
My contribution nationally is built on what I have achieved locally, as branch chair at the University of Westminster. I have championed the post-92 academic contract, for example defending it in successful ACAS negotiations and led negotiations that successfully achieved fractionalisation for hourly-paid staff. I have been instrumental in ensuring that no compulsory redundancies have taken place under challenging circumstances. I have been a union activist throughout my university education and career because I believe strongly that by working together we can defend education and protect our rights.
We face a critical time in protecting education, jobs, pay, USS and TPS pensions and our terms and conditions. As academic and academic-related staff, we responded superbly to the pandemic, showing our loyalty, good will and creativity in adverse circumstances. But the pandemic allowed inequalities to be intensified and offered the ideal excuse for employers to yet again freeze pay, attempt redundancies, intensify pressure to work in unsafe environments or introduce worse terms and conditions. This enhanced our determination to safeguard health and safety, defend jobs, attack inequality, abolish precarious contracts, strengthen negotiating positions, defend and win, as the many successful ballots for action show. The Four Fights remain pertinent for all.
Our response must be through national campaigning so that local UCU activists and members are supported. The looming crisis in post-92 institutions needs to be addressed nationally. We need to strengthen local branches to defend members’ jobs and employment conditions, to defend the right of ownership of intellectual property and moral rights of any video recording, to defend academic freedom, by sharing strategies and tactics, in avoiding redundancies, opposing detrimental contracts and punishing workloads. We need to ensure that fair working conditions apply to all, including casualised staff.
I am a hard-working branch chair and a defender of academic and academic-related staff. Vote for me for a union that campaigns for you and defends your job and employment conditions. I would be honoured to get your vote.
- October 2020-present London Region H&S rep
- 2018-2020 UK-elected NEC member HE
- 2013-present UCU Westminster Coordinating Committee Chair/Vice Chair; and UCU Westminster Cavendish Branch President/Chair/Secretary
- 2003-2010: UCU Westminster Negotiating Secretary (joint); Equalities representative; and member of the negotiating team