Buried under paperwork

Overworked and underpaid

UCU members in 12 FE colleges in Wales have voted to take action in ballots over pay and workload. See the full breakdown of results here.

The two industrial action ballots were called by a special Wales Further Education Committee meeting after ColegauCymru (CC) offered 1% in response to the joint unions' claim of a 7.5% pay increase and refused to negotiate over workoad.

UCU, alongside NASUWT, is now planning strike action over pay beginning in early December, but members will also be asked to walk out to maintain pressure on the employers to return to negotiations over workload.

Update: Following the Welsh government's announcement of further money to ensure that pay parity with school teachers, the employers have made a revised offer to unions and UCU's planned strike action on 4 December has been suspended.

Colleges involved in the ballot

Bridgend College  & Pencoed
Cardiff & Vale College
Coleg Cambria Llysfasi
Coleg Cambria Yale
Coleg Cambria Deeside
Merthyr College
Gower College Swansea
Coleg  Gwent
Coleg Y Cymoedd
Pembrokeshire College
Grŵp Neath Port Talbot
Coleg Sirgar
Coleg Ceredigion

We entered a dispute with the employers over workload at the end of last year and we balloted for industrial action in January 2018.

Acting in good faith, the joint trade unions withdrew the dispute, but CC reneged on the agreement. Their underhand behaviour is unacceptable and shows nothing but contempt for the legitimate concerns of staff in the FE Sector.

CC said that they won't discuss workload until the pay dispute is resolved, but given their track record thus far, there are no guarantees that they will!

On pay - The school teacher's pay review body has just recommended 3.5% for teachers but CC offered staff in FE a derisory 1%. If we accept 1% and school teachers receive 3.5% this will result in the end of pay parity and will condemn more of our members to 'in work' poverty.

It's time to say enough is enough.

What can you do?

Number 1 Keep up to date with the latest UCU pay and workload campaign newsletters:

UCU Wales workload newsletter, Sep 18 [131kb]

Wales joint union pay newsletter, Aug 18 [327kb]

Attend local branch meetings, to discuss the issues with your fellow branch members.

Number 2 Let your branch officer know whether you will support a campaign, including industrial action, to address the issues of workload in your college.

Number 3 Talk to your colleagues who are not members of UCU and encourage them to join UCU and add their voice to the campaign, they can join online at: www.ucu.org.uk/join


Managing workloads - UCU Wales information sheet [549kb]

Last updated: 29 November 2018