ICE negotiations update — May 25, 2017

ICE negotiations update


Here’s an update on ICE from Rebecca and Mark:

As you know we have been acting as negotiating representatives on behalf of staff in Levels 1-6 for the purposes of coming to an agreement with the University over Information and Consultation of Employees (ICE) provisions, i.e. designing a forum whereby the University informs and consults with staff on major developments at the University.

Throughout our entire time as negotiating representatives we have bent over backwards to come to an agreement with the University and the other unions regarding an ICE forum. Our only non-negotiable stance from which we would not depart was to demand that any ICE forum agreed to would give equal and fair representation to staff in Levels 1-6 and the union they had chosen to represent them. As the University and the other unions could not agree to this fundamental point we unfortunately concluded at our last meeting, held on 18 May, that no agreement could be reached.

This means that the forum will be based on the standard provisions of the ICE legislation. Within the next 6 months the University will be arranging for staff to elect members to this forum – we believe there will be about 25 positions in total. These representatives will be the conduit through which the University passes information to and consults with staff.

The IWGB will be running a slate of candidates for election to this forum and we will be in touch over the next months to give you more information about this.  We will continue to argue for a strong and alternative voice for staff at the University and use whatever forum or other means are at our disposal to represent staff.

Thank you for your patience and support throughout this process.

Kind regards,

Rebecca and Mark

Levels 1-6 ICE negotiation representatives

Security Officers’ strike update — May 24, 2017

Security Officers’ strike update


Photo: UVW

Thanks to everyone for their support for the massively successful security officers’ second strike last week! 

We had a great turnout for the strike and the picket (you may have heard us distantly in the background at some point), and had fantastic support from staff as well. 

After our encounter with Jeremy Irons on Tuesday we teamed up with striking UVW cleaners from the LSE on Wednesday for a joint picket. 

Despite this, the University are still trying to claim ignorance of their 2011 promise on differentials, and are refusing to enter negotiations. 

As such, workers voted on the picket line to call for 2 more individual days of strike action – dates to be announced shortly! 

We need all the support we can get – please donate to the ongoing strike fund ( and get in touch if you would like to help by writing to the University – we can suggest a draft template (email Danny at

Free ESOL classes at IWGB —
IWGB Summer Party! —
UCEA proposes pay offer of 1.7% — May 22, 2017

UCEA proposes pay offer of 1.7%

We’ve just heard that the final pay offer proposed by UCEA this year is 1.7% – although it’s up on last year’s offer, it’s still far below inflation – last year we were asking for 5%, and that wasn’t close to the amount we’re due!

You can find out more about UCEA’s offer here:

More information to follow – and we will of course be consulting members on this! If you’ve got any immediate feedback, you can contact Danny at


Strike II – Jeremy Irons edition! — May 17, 2017

Strike II – Jeremy Irons edition!

Last night, security officers on strike carried out a noisy protest outside the entrance to Senate House, timed to coincide with the inaugural 1858 Charter Lecture on TS Eliot, which featured a reading by famous actor Jeremy Irons.

Irons was so perturbed by the noise we were making that he came outside to explain to us that we didn’t need to protest! You can see what he had to say for yourself, along with Jason’s reply:

Of course, we have repeatedly asked for talks with Cordant and with the University of London, and even offered to call off the strikes if talks were started. All of our reasonable offers have been refused, leaving us with no choice but to continue our dispute through strike action.

IWGB calls on fellow unions for support — May 8, 2017

IWGB calls on fellow unions for support

We’ve written to our union colleagues at Birkbeck, SOAS, LSE, City, UCL, KCL and RHUL asking for their support for our security officers’ strike next Tuesday and Wednesday. We’ve asked them to help us, and you can too! You can:

  • Attend the picket line and let the University of London that it can’t treat its staff this way.
  • Spread the word amongst colleagues and friends.
  • Write to UOL Chief Operating Officer Chris Cobb expressing you unhappiness with his handling of the security officers at
  • Support the security officers by contributing to the Crowdpac.
  • Support the IWGB on social media: Facebook & Twitter. 

The text of our letter is below:


I hope this email finds you well. The IWGB are writing today to see if we can count on your support to stand up for the employment rights of your fellow staff at the University of London.

The IWGB has announced a second round of strikes of security officers working at the University of London central administration buildings on the 16th and 17th of May. You can find more information on this press release.

The security officers are demanding an end to zero-hours contracts and that the university implement a pay rise it promised six years.

The first strike held on the 25th and 26th of April received wide coverage in the press, being picked up by the Huffington PostThe GuardianNovara Media & the Camden New Journal. 

You can support the security officers how you see fit. We suggest that you either:

  • Attend the picket line and let the University of London that it can’t treat its staff this way.
  • Spread the word amongst colleagues and friends.
  • Write to UOL Chief Operating Officer Chris Cobb expressing you unhappiness with his handling of the security officers at
  • Support the security officers by contributing to the Crowdpac.
  • Support the IWGB on social media: Facebook & Twitter. 

For further details you can reply to this e-mail or by calling our central office, the telephone number is listed below.

In solidarity,

Patrick Laredo.

Security officers’ strike: Jason writes to UoL — May 4, 2017

Security officers’ strike: Jason writes to UoL

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 (attached and below), 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!



Strike Two: 16-17 May — May 3, 2017