UCU NEC elections:
Vote Marian Mayer for Disabled Members
Defending disabled workers’ rights
I am asking you to re-elect me as NEC representative for disabled members. My personal challenges and barriers faced as a neurodivergent and physically disabled person working in Post 16 education and within our own union equip me well to do the essential work of the HE disabled members representative on the NEC. Having had the privilege of representing disabled members on the NEC since 2021, I have successfully raised issues that specifically impact disabled members.
Working in Bournemouth University for the past 18 years as a Principal Lecturer in Learning Development, I witness the ways in which disabled staff and students are discriminated against every day. Too often it falls to union representatives to protect people from ongoing discrimination that has harmed our members. Succeeding in casework alone is not enough. Whilst we achieve significant benefits for individual members, for example flexible working, phased return to work, and reasonable adjustments, via case work, we need collective solutions and inclusive practice.
The cost of living crisis will affect disabled workers disproportionately and as a union we have to be prepared to do all that we can to mitigate the difficulties members will face.
As a member of my branch’s executive committee, I have served as the equality officer. In that capacity I ensured that the Equality Act 2010 was at the forefront of all of the work done by my university’s Diversity and Equality Committee. It is disappointing to reflect that, 12 years since the act was passed, we have made such little progress on disability rights. Our union is in a position to effect significant improvements for people with disabilities; we have done much but there is more to do.
My current UCU roles include
- National Pay and Equalities Negotiator
- NEC member
- Co- Chair, Bournemouth University UCU and Health and Safety officer.
- Chair Disabled Members Standing Committee
As a DMSC member, branch, and regional delegate to Congress I have submitted motions, passed and now policy, including several to enhance accessibility at UCU meetings and events. I will continue to press our union to properly implement these policies.
As a National Pay and Equality negotiator I successfully included in future claims provision for disabled members, particularly as they so often fall into the intersectionality of women, BAME and casualised workers. As a member of the NEC, I would continue to make this case.
My focus if I am elected will be on holding employers and our union to account when members face discrimination, which all too often harms us.
I am member of UCU left and am asking for your vote so that I can continue to work for disabled workers and all members in post 16 education.
May I urge everyone reading this election address to get involved in your branch and support local and national actions; our strength is in our solidarity.