April 2021 Teesside University Branch News

Welcome to the April 2021 Branch News for Teesside University

Pay Update 2020/21

logo of unison campaign

To recap, we had a 0% pay freeze imposed on us on 1st August 2020 last year, which means zero pay rises since August 2019. As you will know our pay has been shrinking compared to the cost of living for too many years and the Higher Education Service Group Executive have met to address this.

Following our meeting we decided to consult all branches over their acceptance or rejection of the 0% pay freeze with a recommendation from the HESEG that this should be rejected.

The consultation closed on Monday 30 November and members voted overwhelmingly to reject the pay freeze. The HESGE decided that the campaign should be escalated, including planning for industrial action.

The consultation closed on Monday 30 November and members voted overwhelmingly to reject the pay freeze. The HESGE decided that the campaign should be escalated, including planning for industrial action.

The motion voted for at the 2020 HE conference decided on disaggregated ballots if there is any action over pay This means each industrial action ballot will be local and separate – not a national ballot. More information will follow.

Higher Education Joint Union Pay Claim 2021/22

Here are the main points of the claim to be put to employers:

  • A pay uplift of £2,500 on all pay points.
  • An increase in all pay related allowances including London weighting.
  • A minimum of £10 per hour wage for all contract types (In London, where the Living
  • Wage rate will be £10.85 per hour, this should be relevant minimum.);
    For all universities to become Living Wage Foundation accredited employers ensuring that outsourced workers receive, at least, the Living Wage Foundation rate of pay.
  • A maximum sector wide pay ratio of 10:1 which is not limited to the national pay spine (i.e. covers all employees including staff on senior pay rates).
  • Additional uplift at the lower end of the pay spine to address pay compression; aiming to restore the 3% differential between pay spinal column points over the next three years.
  • For the standard weekly full-time contract of employment to be 35 hours per week at all higher education institutions.
  • New JNCHES to establish working group/s to look at career development, progression
    issues and training opportunities in higher education.
  • Ending pay injustice – meaningful, agreed action to tackle the ethnic, gender and disability pay gap; additionally, to take an intersectional approach to the ways in which intersectionality and protected characteristics impact on pay equality.
  • Agreeing a framework to eliminate precarious employment practises and casualised contracts, including zero hours contracts, from higher education; converting hourly paid staff onto fractional contracts; agreeing national guidance to end the outsourcing of support services in higher education and to bring staff into in-house employment;
  • Meaningful, agreed action to address excessive workloads and unpaid work; action to address the impact tpmhat excessive workloads are having on workforce stress and mental ill-health; that workload models and planning take into account COVID pandemic related changes in working practices.
  • To establish the Scottish sub-committee of New JNCHES as set out under the New JNCHES agreement
  • A UK level higher education redeployment facility for those whose jobs are at risk of redundancy.

April is Stress Awareness Month

The month of April is our opportunity to help break the stigma around stress, talk about stress and its effects with your friends and colleagues and show compassion to those who are feeling anxious. Most importantly, look after yourself, take time out of your day to relax and ensure you have space to breathe.

Stress Awareness Month has been held every April since 1992 to increase public awareness about both the causes and cures for our modern stress epidemic. The last year has been especially difficult, dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, so it’s even more important that we’re looking after ourselves and one another.

To help with this UNISON has arranged an online event on

21st April from 12.30pm until 12.50pm

This 20-minute mediation session to relax your mind, refresh your focus and Recharge your energy is open to all members and is being delivered by Innerspace.

To reserve a space, please email your membership number of membereducations@unison.co.uk

Membership Details

It is important that your membership details are up to date. please contact the branch if you have moved address, changed your name, email address or telephone number. Your correct address is particularly important as some information can only be sent to you by post. Email m.sawdon@tees.ac.uk or unison@tees.ac.uk