The Business and Energy Secretary announces investment into battery technology at the University of BirminghamWritten by Phoebe Radford on 2nd August 2017
Trade Unions Condemn UoB Who Will Leave Staff Without 3 Weeks Pay
Last week, unions UNISON, GMB and UNITE condemned plans that would mean 320 University of Birmingham staff will go 3 weeks with no pay in July if proposals to move from weekly to monthly pay go ahead
When the scheme is implemented this summer, workers will receive nothing from the 29th June until the 28th July which could have a detrimental impact on part-time and low paid workers.
Despite the cuts, the university’s rate of income is far from dwindling, as University income has grown by 9% to £650 million. The average salary of those affected by these unanticipated motions is £10,149 a year and work an average of a 24-hour week.
In response to the proposals, UNISON secretary at the University of Birmingham said: ‘These plans will leave over 300 staff with no income for 3 weeks in July. These are nearly all low paid staff and they will be left unable to pay their rent, feed their kids, put money in their meter or get to work. We condemn these proposals and urge the University to immediately withdraw them’.
The changes will affect some of those at the core of the institution’s fundamental services, which are pivotal in maintaining UoB.
“'These are nearly all low paid staff and they will be left unable to pay their rent, feed their kids, put money in their meter or get to work.'
John Cochrane, UNITE secretary at the University of Birmingham has concerns over the effect the changes will have on some of the university’s lowest paid staff. He states that, ‘The fact is that the University Board has no concept of having to live “ hand to mouth”. The way this initiative has been handled, is punitive to say the least, forcing the lowest paid and most vulnerable members of staff to pay for the University’s cost saving scheme.’
‘Whilst the University are offering a loan for 2 weeks income this will have to be repaid over 4 months from August - so staff will lose 2 ½ days income every month for 4 months. For low paid staff this affects this will lead to rent arrears and going hungry at best or facing eviction at worst.’
This is not the first time in the last 6 months that the University’s treatment of staff has come under fire, it remains to be seen if it will be the last.