Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1032/28798

From The Socialist newspaper, 6 March 2019

Stop post-16 education cuts

University and College Union members on the march, photo by Duncan/CC

University and College Union members on the march, photo by Duncan/CC   (Click to enlarge)

Sam Morecroft, UCU Democracy Commission (personal capacity)

University and College Union (UCU) general secretary Sally Hunt has resigned her position on health grounds. Socialist Party members have had criticisms of her leadership, and we stand by those criticisms, but of course we are saddened she has been forced to resign and wish her the very best in the future.

Unfortunately, an emergency meeting of the union's national executive committee voted by 26 to 21 to hold the election for Sally Hunt's replacement straight away.

This was done in full knowledge that the elected Democracy Commission will be putting forward rule changes to UCU's Congress this year. These will allow members to recall a general secretary and force an early election.

The left on the national executive committee opposed an early election because the new general secretary will be in place and their contract signed before congress can take a view on the Democracy Commission recommendations.

No doubt at our congress the right wing will again disgracefully argue that the democratic right of recall constitutes an attack on the employment terms and conditions of the general secretary! Last year they walked out and shut down our congress. Will they try to frustrate the will of the sovereign body of our union again this year?

Unelected senior official Matt Waddup has announced his candidacy for general secretary. Disgracefully, he says he doesn't agree with the Democracy Commission's recommendations and doesn't want to be subject to the recall process.

Who is he to challenge an elected body created by our democratic congress? He's never even worked in education!

Worse still, he was key to the stitch up that withdrew the threat of further strikes in the USS pension dispute last year. Before then, all of the leverage was with us after 14 days of magnificent strike action.

Victory sabotaged

Now, the employers are attempting to impose contribution increases on our members, despite the Joint Expert Panel report demonstrating our pension scheme is healthy. What should have been a total victory has been sabotaged.

Unfortunately, left candidates in the national executive committee elections - which just closed - did not concretely raise the demands for recall put forward by the Democracy Commission. Undoubtedly that means we are in a weaker position than we would have been in responding to these developments.

It's essential that the left and the rank and file in the union unite around one general secretary candidate, not just to defeat Waddup, but to continue the fight to democratise our union and to build a strategy to overcome the Tory anti-union laws and defend post-16 education against cuts, marketisation and privatisation.

The announcement in recent days that all staff at the University of Surrey have been offered voluntary redundancy shows the severity of the attacks we face.

UCU Left should call an emergency conference, alongside groups like the Branch Solidarity Network and UCU Rank and File that grew out of the pension strike, to discuss these developments and our response.

We need to unite around a candidate who will:


As we go to press, the results of the national executive committee elections are still to be announced, which will have a bearing on the general secretary election.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 6 March 2019:


What we think

No retreats: Corbyn must stand firm against Blairites


Workplace news

Stop post-16 education cuts

Interview with a shop worker

MPs boost their own pay

Workplace news in brief


News

Boot out failing Grayling and the other Tory wreckers

Solidarity with Chris Williamson

Trade union action to end low pay now!

A&E 4-hour waiting targets scrapped - Save our NHS!

Them & Us


International Women's Day 2019

A socialist programme to end women's oppression

International Women's Day 2019: End oppression with fight for socialism


Socialist history

Leon Trotsky's struggle against Stalinism


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Southampton: Fight council cuts

Cuts must stop - boot the Tories out

Wildfires hit Europe - build for 15 March student climate strikes

Swansea: Labour council tries to dodge no-cuts protest

Hull: support for anti-cuts policies at Corbyn solidarity rally

Hundreds of Tamils protest against death-threat brigadier


Opinion

Women workers' militancy during the 'great unrest'

The Socialist Inbox


 

Home   |   The Socialist 6 March 2019   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

UCU:

triangleUCU ballots - yes to strike action on pensions, pay, workloads and equality

triangleNottingham college workers plan 15 days of walkouts

triangleUCU conference 2019: Preparing for struggle

triangleUCU general secretary election: fight for a left leadership!

triangleBradford College strike remains solid over pay and funding

Education:

triangleStudents and workers unite against fees, low pay climate change

triangleMoney doesn't make up for cuts - education unions must organise for funding and against Tory attacks

triangleLondon: Students and young workers' assembly

triangleYork Socialist Party: Class and the education system

Cuts:

triangleTory meltdown - Organise to finish them off

triangleDozens of protests say Boris must go - Socialist Party policies heard on TV

triangleWorcestershire: Stop the fire cuts!

Union:

triangleScotland and Brexit: Developing threat to the capitalist union

triangleClimate strikes: trade union round-up

Democracy:

triangleCapitalist 'democracy' v socialist democracy

University:

triangleBirmingham uni workers strike against terms and conditions attacks

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

11/9/19

NSSN

Lobby of TUC: Upbeat meeting calls for trade union lead to boot out Tories

11/9/19

PCS

Fighting PCS general secretary needed - Marion Lloyd: Why I am standing

11/9/19

Climate change

Climate strikes: trade union round-up

11/9/19

Coventry

Coventry: 100 pack meeting against congestion charge

11/9/19

The Socialist

Socialist newspaper sales round-up

11/9/19

Salisbury

Salisbury welcomes Socialist campaigners

11/9/19

Leicester

Leicester Kashmir protest rejects religious smokescreen

11/9/19

Bracknell

Frimley hospital staff fight back-door privatisation

11/9/19

Leeds

Leeds pensioners occupy BBC to save free TV licenses

11/9/19

Fire

Another London block of flats destroyed by fire - remove unsafe cladding now!

11/9/19

Climate change

Students and workers unite against fees, low pay climate change

11/9/19

Workers

Workplace news in brief

11/9/19

UCU

UCU ballots - yes to strike action on pensions, pay, workloads and equality

11/9/19

Asda

Asda workers protest against worse contract

11/9/19

Bus

Unions must fight to make bus drivers and passengers safe

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07954 376 096

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


September 2019

August 2019

July 2019

June 2019

May 2019

April 2019

March 2019

February 2019

January 2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999