• Reverse the cuts to union learning
    I saw first-hand the difference union learning made for hundreds of my workmates and friends. So when I heard the news that the government planned to cut the Union Learning Fund, I was devastated. I thought of everyone I’d supported as a union learning rep and what they would have missed out on without this programme. I thought of the workers getting our country through this crisis, who deserve an opportunity to access education and learn new skills in the workplace. It’s impossible to list all of the benefits of union learning I’ve seen, but I can honestly say it’s changed lives. Our training around mental health helped normalise talking about it at work. People who missed out at school learned English and maths in union learning courses, skills they’ll have for life. And those who came to learning centres and engaged in courses came back over and over again, earning apprenticeships and higher qualifications. And independent reviews have consistently found union learning to be effective and transformational for the workers who take part, their families, and communities. The government must reverse its decision immediately.
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  • Suspend all strike pay deductions
    This is important at a time when university staff have rallied and gone beyond their contractual duties and normal working hours to ensure that all essential work including teaching has continued whilst the University has taken measures to address the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. Several universities in the UK (including the University of St. Andrews, King’s College London, and Birkbeck) have already announced an amnesty on pay deductions in recognition of the exceptional demands on their staff. We ask that the University of Kent follow these examples by granting an amnesty on strike pay deductions given that exceptional demands on their staff are likely to be ongoing for some time and to ensure staff morale and goodwill at this time.
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    Created by Suhraiya Jivraj
  • University of Sheffield Students' Union Staff are #BetterThanZero
    There are currently hundreds of workers at the Students’ Union working in the bars, cafés, shops and kitchens on zero hour contracts, with no access to sick pay, being paid just the minimum wage. They are mostly students who must work to pay their rent and continue their studies. The combination of low pay, an insufficient student loan, and high rent forces casual workers to scrape by in poor quality housing. Being close to maxing out your overdraft is, for many, normal. Their work generates significant income for the Students' Union and is hugely important for the University's reputation. The improvements they are asking for would transform the lives of hundreds, and would cost less than the University's Vice Chancellor earns in a year. We call on the University of Sheffield Students' Union to do the right thing, and show their casual workers that they are valued, that their health and wellbeing matter – that they are #BetterThanZero.
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    Created by Unite at Sheffield SU
  • City of Edinburgh Council: Save Our Instrumental Music Service
    City of Edinburgh Council wants to make significant cuts to its instrumental music service. They are launching a “full consultation” on its future ahead of proposed cuts of £150,000 in 2021/22 and £350,000 in 2022/23. It's not right, and it’s not fair. Cutting Edinburgh’s instrumental music service means taking opportunity away from Edinburgh's children and young people. Over 40% of those from low-income families say music lessons are beyond their household budgets. Musicians' Union research shows that families with a total household income of less than £28,000 are half as likely to have a child learning an instrument as more affluent peers with a family income of £48,000 or more – despite similar levels of interest from both groups of children. Music should be available and attainable for all, whether they are the next Lewis Capaldi, Nicola Benedetti or Primal Scream, or they just want to try something new. There is plenty of evidence that shows the benefits of music beyond art for art’s sake, and its value to the UK economy (£5.2 billion). Music has been shown to boost attainment in schools, and positively impact a child’s cognitive abilities as well as social and emotional development. It’s also about who we are as a community. We want more, not less, diversity in the stories we tell and are told. We call on City of Edinburgh Council to let every child learn music.
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    Created by Caroline Sewell
  • General Election to Elect Our Prime Minister
    Boris Johnson is a right wing symbol for attacks on the most vulnerable sections of our society. Unelected, with no mandate equates to a free hand in decimating the Rights of workers, the NHS, the Climate. All our communities are in danger from this.
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    Created by John Blakemore