Glasgow Caledonian University unions today condemned the re-appearance of heavy handed tactics by management which threaten to return labour relations to rock bottom once more at the university.
Following the one day strike by EIS members on 23rd October, staff were shocked to receive the following e-mail – sent to all staff – from the head of HR:
Further to the communication last week regarding the EIS strike action of the 23rd, we have also received notification that EIS intends to take industrial action short of a strike from 24 October 2012. Action short of a strike will be interpreted as partial performance under the terms of an employee’s contract. The University does not accept partial performance and will deduct 100% of a person’s pay for each working day that staff participate in partial performance of duties. The withholding of pay is without prejudice to any right or remedy of the University, including any claim for damages for breach of contract.
You should note that, if an employee chooses to continue to perform some of their duties, this does not mean that the University has accepted partial performance – this partial performance is voluntary and will not be paid for”.
It’s the view of the combined unions that this language and approach is more reminiscent of workhouse labour relations, than the modern, forward looking university that the staff at Glasgow Caledonian wish it to be. Quite frankly we are also astonished that in the wake of the dissatisfaction expressed in last year’s staff survey this heavy handed approach is again being adopted in the month before the next Pulse survey is launched, and also when the university is quite rightly receiving media accolades following the appointment of our new Chancellor.
The unions are considering their response to this unwelcome development which sends out all the wrong signals to hard working staff whose living standards have declined over the last five years. We do not believe that it represents an acceptable ‘peoples’ strategy’. We would like this dictat withdrawn.