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Dispute Letter – June 2018

Published: 15th June, 2018

The letter below was sent to Professor Paul Boyle on 15th June 2018

Professor Paul Boyle

University of Leicester

University Road

Leicester LE1 7RH

15th June 2018


Dear Professor Boyle,

Declaration of dispute: staff redundancies

I write on behalf of the University of Leicester UCU and in conjunction with advice from our Regional Office.  As you know, UCU has met several times with members of the University Leadership Team (ULT) since the end of April, including since your announcement on 17th May 2018 of potential compulsory redundancies.  During these meetings we have detailed our failure to agree and how angry our members are at the need for further job losses on top of the current de facto recruitment freeze when there is no financial crisis.

LUCU has consistently argued that:

  • ULT’s perceived need to reduce staffing costs to the sector average (as a proportion of total income) is an inappropriate target for the University of Leicester;
  • It is wholly unacceptable and unnecessary to dismiss staff in order to help fund building/infrastructure;
  • the current de facto recruitment freeze is having detrimental effect on the volume, intensity and quality of work our members carry out; and
  • this latest round of threatened redundancies and de facto recruitment freeze is causing further severe damage to already poor staff morale.

At every meeting UCU has sought assurances that there will be no compulsory redundancies and that those on fixed-term contracts employees will have their contracts renewed as a matter of course unless there is clear evidence that to demonstrate that the work is ceasing, or the number of people required to carry out this work is reduced or diminishing. Without this demonstrable evidence there is not a lawful case for redundancy. To date, ULT has refused to provide assurances on either of these two points. It is with regret, therefore, that I am writing to formally register a trade dispute between UCU and the University on the issue listed above.

UCU reserves its right to now progress this matter but the institution is aware that resolution of this issue requires two commitments on part of the University:

  1. That there will be no compulsory redundancies
  2. That the University renew fixed term contracts unless there is a genuine reason for not doing so, i.e. the number of people needed to do the work has reduced, diminished or ceased.

UCU will continue to meet with the University to try and resolve this dispute.  However, this dispute will continue until the above issues, and any issues related to any industrial action called for by the Union in support of the dispute, have been resolved to UCU’s satisfaction.


Yours sincerely


Christine Vie

Chair, Leicester UCU