This statement first appeared on the Fractionals For Fair Play (FFFP) Facebook page.
FFFP STATEMENT ON ACAS TALKS AND UPCOMING NEGOTIATIONS
ALL-FRACTIONALS MEETING ON 3 JUNE 5PM ROOM 116
On Friday 23 May UCU representatives and SOAS management reached an agreement at ACAS regarding the fractional staff dispute. This agreement is a first victory for all of us.
FFFP welcomes the agreement as it assures the principle of increasing the overall fractional budget, secures further negotiations in June 2014 to address the issues raised by our campaign regarding fractional staff’s pay and working conditions at SOAS, and guarantees no victimisation of fellow fractionals involved in the campaign and its actions.
As a result of our commitment, organisation, and action, we have achieved compensation for a portion of the unpaid labour fractional teaching staff performed during this academic year. SOAS management has committed to compensate fractional staff working during 2013/14 a total of £150,000 to be paid in in three equal instalments, the last of which is conditional on the outcome of negotiations. On this basis, we now call on our fellow fractional colleagues to mark the coursework for this academic year.
The first instalment (£50,000) will be distributed to all fractional staff whose terms and conditions were discussed at the ACAS talks and will continue to be discussed in the upcoming negotiations. This includes all 2013/14 GTAs, TFs and STFs at SOAS, and does not include fractional teaching staff in IFCELS, the Language Centre and those paid at market rates. The second and third instalments (£50,000) will be paid pro-rata and, therefore, UCU in consultation with all SOAS fractionals, will agree a mechanism for distributing it. FFFP will present a proposal at an ALL-FRACTIONALS MEETING on 3 June at 5pm in Room 116. Please make every effort to attend to express your opinion about the proposal.
FFFP welcomes this agreement as an important first victory. Over and above the monetary value, this compensation has crucial symbolic value as it acknowledges the justice of our cause and demands. It also demonstrates that SOAS management has recognised that we have performed unpaid labour during 2013/14. However, it is essential that in the upcoming negotiations we continue to sustain our principles of fair pay for all by holding to our demands for improved fractional contracts.
The upcoming negotiations are of critical importance to the longer-term position, security, and demands of fractionals at SOAS. This includes our demands to extract assessment and office hours from the multiplier, to be paid for lecture attendance, to be paid for required training, and to be allotted adequate paid time for preparation for tutorials, and course preparation (in the case of STFs), amongst other demands. It is still in our hands to make these negotiations another victory for fractionals at SOAS.
Fractional staff at SOAS would like to offer our thanks to all those involved in our steps to this first victory. This includes all of the fractional staff who have mobilised and helped us break out of the isolation we once found ourselves in. It also includes all of those students, permanent colleagues, union members, SOAS cleaners, and UCU representatives, unions and organisations across the country, and international academics who stood with us, and continue to stand with us, in solidarity. FFFP would like to sincerely thank you.
In the coming weeks let’s continue to stand together to ensure our teaching at SOAS is dignified. Raise your voice to achieve a fairer contract for fractionals. Stay united, strong and active!