Please see below for our email to the University relating to the planned redundancies and outsourcing at Student Central (formerly ULU). If you do have any questions or feedback re this issue please do drop Danny a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am writing again with regard to the proposed staff restructure at Student Central. It is worth noting that the reluctance of HR to share these documents with the IWGB has impeded our capacity to support our members, and is further evidence of the need for these consultation arrangements to be addressed in the ongoing ICE negotiations.
Having now had a chance to examine the proposals, we would make the following main points:
- these are massive changes, involving the disestablishment of large numbers of posts, and subsequent potential redundancies
- those staff that TUPE to Aramark will lose their University pensions
- the justifying document itself is brief, and provides little detail as to the full implications of the proposed changes on the day-to-day operations of Student Central
- students themselves have not been consulted
- the process has been far too short to allow for meaningful consultation
- the implementation date of 1 August is unrealistic, and will lead to additional costs being occurred
- the sole justification for the process appears to be to save money, without taking into account the impact on services
- to try and make a saving of almost £1m out of the Student Central budget in one year is unrealistic, and will inevitably impact of services, workload, and staff morale.
Furthermore, we have heard extremely worrying reports that the University is to break its commitment to pay the London Living Wage, and will allow Aramark to hire new staff at minimum wage levels.
It is clear that these proposals do not have the support of staff or students, and are simply being railroaded through. Furthermore, the Student Central deficit is not sufficient justification, given that other departments (CoSector is to make a loss of £1.6m this year) face comparable deficits without such drastic action being scheduled.
We therefore call on the University to halt these plans, to commit to a new process with a guarantee of no redundancies and no outsourcing, and this time to properly involve staff and students.