We all need support at work from time to time, and much of the UCU’s work is about supporting individual members whenever they feel a little help would be appreciated.
There are many situations in which we might be able to offer such support – from small scale fall-outs with colleagues to more serious matters where members might either consider raising a formal complaint or benefit from support in meeting the challenges of a grievances brought against themselves.
Whenever a member feels support would be useful they should email the Warwick UCU Administrator with a brief outline of the situation and their membership number (if known). Once we have ascertained what type of support we can offer, the details will be passed to the Casework Coordinator. Here we will offer a triage of the situation, potentially providing immediate advice, or where more appropriate connecting them with a dedicated Caseworker to support you more closely.
The caseworker will arrange to meet with you so they can fully understand the situation, and will offer advice and/or provide relevant information to help with decision making – and hopefully achieve the best outcome possible.
If you are being disciplined, or taking a grievance against another member of staff, you have a legal right to be accompanied by a union representative.
The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) provide very useful, independent guidance on a wide variety of Employment Relations that should help you understand the expected processes and rights: https://www.acas.org.uk/advice
If you can’t find what you are looking for on the website, you can also call the ACAS helpline and ask a trained Adviser, anonymously, for information: https://www.acas.org.uk/helpline
Warwick UCU has a team of trained personal caseworkers. These are volunteer members who have been trained to provide support, advice and representation on employment related difficulties.
Warwick UCU caseworkers routinely help members with individual problems arising from their employment by the University of Warwick. These include, for example, potential disciplinary action, renewal of fixed term contracts, pensions, promotion and career development, study leave, research facilities, and harassment.
Recourse complements the work of the union, offering members free information and advice, 24-hour telephone counselling, online coaching and financial assistance.
Warwick UCU is only able to offer advice and support to paid-up members. Furthermore, under the terms of the legal aid scheme (further information), legal advice can only be given to members in respect of circumstances which have commenced during their membership.