AGM – brief report and new officers — May 10, 2017

AGM – brief report and new officers

uolagmApologies for the delay in reporting back from the branch AGM – it was a very successful event, and we will of course be providing the minutes in full, but for now we just wanted to provide a quick update of the officer elections.

The main change is that Catherine has stepped down as branch secretary after three fantastic years of sterling service and amazingly hard work – she’s not going anywhere, and will still be just as involved in the branch, but she will be standing for the new national position of Women’s Officer and as a result has had to give up this other post.

Election results

Branch Chair: Maritza Castillo Calle and Wilson Ayala Romero both stood, and as a result there will be a postal ballot, starting after the national election on 27 May 2017.

Vice-Chair: Abdul Bakhsh

Branch Secretary: Danny Millum

Assistant Secretary: Rebecca Dooley

Recruitment Officer: Lewis Petterson

Education Officer: Camila Gatica

Treasurer: Lindsey Caffin

Second Treasurer: Alison Hunter

Communications Officer: Matt Mahon

Campaigns Officer: position vacant

Trustees: Frankie Cunha

IWGB General Secretary writes to the University of London over potentially illegal use of unlicensed security — May 1, 2017

IWGB General Secretary writes to the University of London over potentially illegal use of unlicensed security

See below for an email from Dr Jason Moyer-Lee (IWGB General Secretary) to Kim Frost (University Secretary).

Dear Kim

In case you haven’t seen, I thought you might be interested in some of the coverage of this week’s strike by University of London security guards, including one written by one of your security guards himself.

As I’m sure you are already aware by now, there appears to have been an incident of Cordant not abiding by Security Industry Authority (SIA) regulations as many of the “security guards” performing security duties at the protest were not displaying an ID badge.  We also have reason to believe that some of these may not have even been licensed security guards.  Indeed, as soon as we made an announcement at the protest about this, all of the non-ID’d “security guards” were shooed inside the building and Lee Smith (also performing security duties on the day) disappeared from the protest.  Performing security duties without a license and using unlicensed security guards are criminal offenses which needless to say puts your workers at health and safety risks.  We have had at least two complaints from our members that they were assaulted by these non-ID displaying and potentially unlicensed individuals.  All of this was documented with photos and/or video at the time.

Outsourcing low paid staff in order to avoid giving them decent pay and terms and conditions is pretty bad.  Promising them their pay differentials would be maintained and then reneging on that promise whilst sitting idly by as the use of 0 hours contracts becomes rampant on campus is worse.  But allowing your contractor to bring in a bunch of 0 hours, unidentified, and potentially unlicensed security staff in order to break a legitimate strike is truly disgusting.  I have already alerted the SIA to the issue and we are currently looking into the legality and criminal aspects of the entire operation as well as who is and is not licensed (e.g. Lee Smith).  Trust me when I say we will get to the bottom of this and when we do we will pursue both University of London and Cordant to the full extent of the law.

Enjoy your bank holiday weekend!


Dr. Jason Moyer-Lee

General Secretary


UoL and Cordant planning to bring in zero-hours staff to cover security strike — April 19, 2017

UoL and Cordant planning to bring in zero-hours staff to cover security strike

See our letter to Chris Cobb below:

Dear Chris

As you know, security officers at the University of London will be striking next week over zero-hours contracts, inadequate payslips, and broken promises on pay that has meant an effective 25% pay cut.

Many of these staff have worked here for years, and they are extremely reluctant to cause any disruption to fellow staff and students.

However, the University and their security contractor Cordant have given them no alternative. Despite the reasonableness of their demands, all efforts at negotiation have been ignored.

It has now come to light that rather than make any effort to meet these employees and avert this damaging strike, the Cordant is planning:

  1. To bring in temporary staff on zero-hours contracts to cover them.
  2. To force existing staff to train these replacements (this is already happening).
  3. To pay these temporary staff only the minimum wage of £7.50 an hour, despite the University of London guaranteeing that all staff will be paid at least the London Living Wage of £9.75.
  4. To place at risk staff and students across the University of London by employing staff with minimum training and no knowledge of the buildings or their occupants.

If the University is aware of this, it is breaking its London Living Wage commitments and openly encouraging the use of zero-hour contracts in order to break the strike. Furthermore it will also be legally culpable should a fire or other serious incident occur  without trained staff on hand to handle it.

Can you therefore confirm that the University will instruct its contractor to abandon this plan, and instead offer a fair solution to the issues raised by its employees?

Can you also confirm that the University is guaranteeing that it is providing a safe environment for staff and students, as it is legally required to do?

Best wishes


Danny Millum



Te invitamos a la Asamblea General Anual de la rama IWGB de la Universidad de Londres! Sábado 29 de abril 2017! — April 16, 2017
Come to the University of London AGM – Saturday 29 April at IALS! —
¡Apuntaos esta fecha! La Asamblea General Anual de la rama de la Universidad de Londres – el sábado 29 de abril 2017 — March 29, 2017

¡Apuntaos esta fecha! La Asamblea General Anual de la rama de la Universidad de Londres – el sábado 29 de abril 2017

agm2016Como se anunció en la última reunión, la Asamblea General Anual de la rama tendrá lugar el sábado 29 de abril desde las 3 de la tarde hasta las 5 en el Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (Charles Clore House, 17 Russell Square, Bloomsbury, Londres WC1B 5DR).

Instamos a todos miembros a asistir a la asamblea, porque hemos tenido otro año ocupado y con éxitos: la rama se ha crecido aún más, y ha hecho una serie de campañas y ha apoyado a miembros en numerosos casos.

Ésta es una oportunidad que viene una vez al año para:

  • escuchar reportajes completos sobre las actividades de la rama
  • presentarse como candidato a las elecciones para puestos de oficiales
  • eligir a nuevos oficiales
  • disfrutar de comida y bebidas y conocer a otros miembros

Enviaremos más información antes del día de la Asamblea, pero si uno quiere presentarse como candidato a las elecciones, se puede poner en contacto con Catherine Morrissey ( para conseguir un formulario de propuesta. Se puede simplemente preguntar si quiere más información – ¡siempre tenemos muchas ganas de ver participar a nueva gente!

Los puestos disponibles son:

  • Presidente de filial
  • Vice-Presidente de filial
  • Secretario de filial
  • Subsecretario
  • Oficial de contratación
  • Oficial de educación
  • Tesorero
  • Segundo tesorero
  • Oficial de comunicaciones
  • Oficial de campañas
  • Síndicos (x2)


BREAKING NEWS! Ballot results! 100% YES vote —

BREAKING NEWS! Ballot results! 100% YES vote


BREAKING NEWS! The strike ballot results are in! Security officers have voted 100% YES to strike action over pay!

We have just sent the results to Cordant!

We are one of the first unions to successfully ballot under the new Trade Union Act. John Gallogly of the Electoral Reform Services (who ran the ballot) told us: ‘Excellent turnout and one of the first to close with the new requirements’.

We will be announcing strike dates imminently!

Any questions please contact us via

Save the date! University of London Branch AGM – Saturday 29 April —

Save the date! University of London Branch AGM – Saturday 29 April

agm2016As announced at the last branch meeting, the branch AGM will take place on Saturday 29 April between 3pm and 5pm  in the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (Charles Clore House, 17 Russell Square, Bloomsbury, London WC1B 5DR).

All members are urged to attend – we have had another busy and successful year, with the branch once again growing in size, running a series of campaigns and supporting members in numerous cases.

This is a once-a-year chance to:

  • hear full reports of branch activity
  • stand for election for officer posts
  • elect new officers
  • enjoy food and drink and meet fellow branch members

We will send out more information in advance of the day, but if you do wish to stand for election, please contact Catherine Morrissey ( for a nomination form. Please do just ask if you want more information as well – we are always super-keen to get new people involved!

The available positions are:

  • Branch Chair
  • Vice-Chair
  • Branch Secretary
  • Assistant Secretary
  • Recruitment Officer
  • Education Officer
  • Treasurer
  • Second Treasurer
  • Communications Officer
  • Campaigns Officer
  • Trustees (x2)


Aramark presses ahead with redundancy plans — March 1, 2017

Aramark presses ahead with redundancy plans

After an extended pause in its restructure, University caterer Aramark has this week imposed a new revised structure on staff. While there have been some changes, unnecessary redundancies are still planned. The IWGB has written to Aramark and the University to oppose these:

Dear Viv

We have now seen the minutes of Monday’s meeting.

It is clear from these that Aramark and the University of London intend to press on with a number of completely avoidable ‘redundancies’.

  1. None of the questions raised in our initial response have been answered.
  2. No business case has been provided.
  3. No justification has been given for why this restructure could not wait for the opening of new café.
  4. No exploration of the impact of these changes on staff with protected characteristics has been attempted.
  5. No recognition has been made of the negative impact the absence of a café supervisor has already had
  6. No attempt has been made to halt the spread of zero-hours contracts at the University of London.

The law is clear that avoidable job losses are not redundancies at all.

Should these plans go ahead, we will advise our members that they have strong claims for unfair and/or constructive dismissal.

Best wishes


Danny Millum