The Branch’s rescheduled AGM will take place on Tuesday March 12th.
Please note we are not able to hold the AGM on campus due to Max’s suspension. The AGM will be held at Resource for London, 356 Holloway Road.
How to find Resource for London:
From the Tower Building: walk past the Learning Centre and under the bridge, Resource for London is next to Waitrose just before the junction with Tollington Road.
From Stapleton House/ Holloway Road Tube: turn left and walk under the railway bridge for 5 minutes. Resource for London is on the opposite side of the road and can be reached by using the pedestrian crossing.
Click here to find the Resource Centre for London
We have two confirmed guest speakers:
1) Prof Sian Moore will be presenting research on trade union recognition (and de-recognition);
2) Paul Holmes, Kirklees Local Government UNISON Branch Sec: ‘Building a strong branch’; http://paulholmeskirklees.blogspot.co.uk/
We will send out the final agenda next week. Any amendments to these motions attached will be accepted until midday on Monday 11th March as long as they are within UNISON’s rules.
Any person wishing to stand for a vacant post can do so at the AGM itself.
Lunch will be provided and travel expenses will be reimbursed but please bring a receipt (bus ticket/ tube ticket).
Management have been notified of the meeting by HR and have been given the following advice:
“Deans and Heads are asked to permit any UNISON members who wish to attend this meeting to do so, as long as this does not have a significant adverse impact on service provision, and to take into consideration reasonable travelling time for any members who need to travel to the Holloway hub in order to attend. In line with the UNISON facilities time agreement, any staff who are given permission to attend the AGM should not then be required to make up that time.”
Therefore if you have any problems getting time off to attend please do contact your local rep for support.
You can see the current elected reps and their contact details here:
See the draft Agenda below:
11th ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Tuesday 12th March 2013, 12.30 – 2.30pm
Resource For London, 356 Holloway Road, N7 6PA
1 Welcome by Chair and introduction of branch officers
2 Minutes of last General Meeting
4 FILM (5 Min)
5 Annual report from Branch Committee
- Branch Secretary and branch officers reports
- Review of last year’s activities and discussion
6 Finance report
- Presentation of audited accounts
- Election of auditors (Linda Butcher)
7 Election of branch officers, workplace reps and other roles
8 Guest speaker/s
- Prof Sonia McKay: present research on trade union recognition (and de-recognition)
- Paul Holmes, Kirklees Local Government UNISON Branch Sec: ‘Building a strong branch’;
1) Stress, bullying and workloads
2) CAPITA: outsourcing, relocation and the threat to our recognition agreement
3) Reinstate Jawad, Max and Steve: stop the witch hunt
10 Constitutional Amendments
Add ‘Deputy Chair’ to list of elected officers
11 Any other business
There are also three draft motions that have been tabled, the text of which are below:
Motion1 – Stress (DRAFT)
This UNISON AGM notes the increased workload and high incidents of sick absence at London Met.
This UNISON AGM believes:
1. The university management have continually failed to take seriously the issue of stress and that they are responsible for the high levels of stress at work.
2 Constant changes, restructuring, initiative over loads, redundancies, attempted privatisations, consultations, and all of the never ending revolutions at London Met has had hugely damaging impact on our health and morale.
3. Many staff are at breaking point, and UNISON reps are having to cope with increased demand on our time and have a high volume of case work due to stress.
4. The twin to stressed management teams are a tendency towards bullying and anecdotal evidence suggests that as a result there is a significant number of staff who feel bullied at London Met;
5. High stress levels and incidences of bullying are also a direct consequence of increased work loads, fewer staff and difficult work environment.
This AGM resolves to:
1. Continue to keep stress on the agenda in management meetings and to try to work within the current structures of the university to press management to take seriously their obligations and to recognise their duty of care to staff health and well-being.
2. Arrange regular ‘Reclaim your lunch hour’ and related activities to highlight the need to come together, to have a proper break and to relax away our desks or work stations.
3. press management to carry out health risk assessments with an eye on staff stress levels when carrying out any future changes at London Met.
4. encourage an increased participation in members becoming shop stewards to support and help out their colleagues when in need of a rep.
5. ensure that those activists are supported in their work as shops stewards and to seek regional support for activists who carry a large burden at work.
Motion 2: Capita, outsourcing / relocation and the threat of de recognition (DRAFT)
This UNISON AGM notes:
1) Capita, who are currently employed as a consultant by the University, has not ruled out the options of outsourcing nor of relocation of London Met support staff jobs as a result of their ‘Business Process Review’ (BPR). UNISON took the position to defend these ‘red lines’ and stated claely that unless they are removed from the agenda we cannot work with them;
2) The response of the Vice-Chancellor to this democratic and collective decision (and one clearly stated as such) was to launch an unprovoked public attack on the Chair of our Branch and threaten UNISON’s recognition agreement.
3) The recognition agreement between London Met Management recognises our right to represent our members and criticise management.
4) That for much of 2012 senior management stated that shared services was not outsourcing and that they were not in favour of wholesale outsourcing. We agree with them in respect of the latter. Our members deserve to be able to remain to be ‘proud to be London Met’ and not farmed out to a private company.
5) Derecognition would deny staff the right to be represented by UNISON. We would not be able to negotiate with management on behalf of staff over pay and holidays nor would we have the right to consultation over job losses or restructuring.
This UNISON AGM believes:
1) That until these ‘red lines’ are withdrawn from the current agenda then we cannot encourage our members to actively volunteer any part of their labour unless instructed by their line manager to do so. If a meeting is mandatory, then they must make this plain, and any reasonable request to attend a workshop should be heeded.
2) That the VC’s outburst was an attack on the democracy of our UNISON and therefore on each and every member.
3) The recent threat to derecognise UNISON was a result of our ‘red lines’ as outlined in the email communications and we believe this is because of the robust stance we have taken to prevent the threat of outsourcing.
4) That the surest way to resist any attempted recognition process is to maintain a high level of density of union membership.
We resolve to instruct the Branch Committee:
1) If, as a result of the review, Capita Consultancy propose the privatisation, outsourcing or relocation of any further parts of our support staff roles – including payroll or Health and Safety functions – the UNISON branch Committee should move to dispute and with a view to ballot for industrial action until the proposal is withdrawn.
2) We therefore resolve to actively encourage all our members to participate in a campaign to build and grow our union – together we are stronger! This AGM encourages every member to become a ‘UNISON Champion’, and to recruit non-members, outlining our campaign against outsourcing, and the threat to de-recognise us as a result.
3) To stand shoulder to shoulder with any member or members of our Union who are victimised by management, particularly over an action taken collectively and democratically by our union.
4) To remain resolute in its commitment to represent members in the manner it sees fit and to continue to be accountable to members in all decisions made and all action taken.
Motion 3: Reinstate Jawad, Max and Steve Jeffreys: stop the witch hunt
This UNISON AGM notes:
- That London Metropolitan University UNISON has been at the forefront of defending Higher Education and support staff terms and conditions for many years.
- The campaign against the conviction of Jawad Botmeh in 1996 on a charge of conspiracy to cause explosions which received national UNISON support.
- That Jawad Botmeh quite properly disclosed his conviction when he applied for a post in the Working Lives Research Institute at London Metropolitan University in 2008 and subsequently when he applied for a permanent position at the University.
- The suspension by London Metropolitan University of:
- UNISON Branch Chair and Higher Education UNISON NEC member, Max Watson on 7 February 2013;
- UNISON supported, elected staff governor, Jawad Botmeh on 7 February 2013;
- Professor Steve Jefferys, Director of Londonmet’s Faculty Advanced Institute for Research (FAIR) and head of WLRI on 20 February 2013.
- That these suspensions follow threats made by London Metropolitan University Vice Chancellor Malcolm Gillies to derecognise the UNISON Branch, totally unfounded allegations against the Branch Chair and the democratic election of Jawad Botmeh as a staff governor on the University’s Governing Body.
This UNISON AGM believes:
- That the suspension and threatened dismissal of Max Watson and Jawad Botmeh is a clear case of victimisation of UNISON activists and elected staff representatives.
- That the Working Lives Research Institute should be congratulated for discounting Jawad’s previous conviction, deciding that it had no relevance to the post being interviewed for, and appointing on the sole basis of the most suitable applicant for the job.
We resolve to
- Continue to vigorously campaign for the immediate reinstatement of Max Watson, Jawad Botmeh and Prof Steve Jeffreys.
- Instruct the Branch Committee to take all action necessary, including industrial action, if the university moves to discipline Max Watson, Jawad Botmeh and/or Prof Steve Jeffreys.