December 15, 2006

UCU discovers workplace bullying through NUS...

From: The National Union of Students (NUS)

Bullying ‘overlooked’ in further and higher education, says NUS

Today (21 November 2006) NUS will launch a survey to discover the extent of bullying in further and higher education, saying that the lack of data on bullying is a “badge of shame” for the sector.

The survey will be launched during Anti Bullying Week, at NUS’ ‘Beat Bullying’ day on 21st November. The event will discuss the nature and extent of bullying for staff and students throughout post school education and will hear from prominent figures in the sector such as Roger Kline, Head of Equality and Employment Rights at the University and College Union (UCU)

Ama Uzowuru, NUS National Executive Member, said:

“We need to urgently address the issue of bullying by anyone of anyone in HE and FE, it has been overlooked for far too long. Bullying doesn’t start and stop in school. Whether it is in the workplace, in schools or in further and higher education, people of all ages and backgrounds are bullied.

NUS take bullying extremely seriously. Staff and students up and down the country are suffering in silence and in extreme cases are leaving jobs or dropping out of university because they just can’t cope anymore.”

Louise Sweeney, NUS National Executive Member, said:

“The fact that we have no idea how widespread the problem is, is a badge of shame for the sector and needs to be addressed.

We are seeking to firmly place bullying on the agenda. We hope that the result of this survey will catapult the further and higher education sectors into action over a topic that has been swept under the carpet for too long.”

Roger Kline, UCU Head of Equality and Employment Rights, said:

"Bullying in any context is not acceptable. In a learning environment it can damage students' life chances. UCU has campaigned vigorously against bullying of lecturers, researchers and related staff, which is on the increase, as market forces impact on education. Bullied lecturers cannot do their best for students. Bullied students cannot give their best academically. We look forward to working with NUS on this important campaign where we have such common interest."


Mr. Kline we are happy that you have at last discovered workplace bullying as the Head of Equality and Employment Rights in UCU. We are also happy that you acknowledge that 'bullied lecturers cannot do their best for students'. Is there anything else you want to tell the many members who the union has let down in terms of its lack of support on workplace bullying, or are you simply happy to provide only some rhetoric that goes down well with NUS?


Anonymous said...

All this talk about anti-bullying support is nonsense.

Any claims of bullying mean the death sentence for the academic or the researcher.

Academics cooperate against anyone complaining.

Anonymous said...

Mr.Kline I too am happy you have discovered workplace bullying but did the Union not allow academic inflation to occur (5-50% entering Higher Education)in Higher Education to support this Governments academic targets. The price of that surely was the bullying of academic staff and academic freedom so that no one would question the philosophy and demise of our acdemic system envied over the world. Now that this Governments target is within reach the Unions that sold its members out now claim they want to make a stand against bullying. In view of the current campaign for re-election I have to ask why was the stand not made earlier and having sold out academic freedom you then sold your members out in the pay negotiations. I consider this is more rhetoric than real action to change the law on work place bullying.

Anonymous said...

UCU needs to be taken to task over its lack of support for members who are bullied at work. I suggest that Roger Kline is inundated with emails asking him to explain what action he intends to take. He could support me for instance. I took out a grievance in Jan 2006 and the 'support' from UCU has been low key....