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UCU Strike Action advice for Students

Sheffield Hallam Students' Union statement and advice to students regarding the UCU Strike

The Union representing Hallam University staff has announced 14 days of strike action starting 20th February. The strikes will take place over the course of four weeks:

  • Week one - Thursday 20 & Friday 21 February
  • Week two – Monday 24, Tuesday 25 & Wednesday 26 February
  • Week three – Monday 2, Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4 & Thursday 5 March
  • Week four – Monday 9, Tuesday 10, Wednesday 11, Thursday 12 & Friday 13 March

We understand that students may be concerned about lectures being cancelled over the strike. However it's important to note that most teaching sessions took place during the last period of strike action, and that students should attend their teaching sessions unless they hear otherwise.  

As was the case in November/December, Sheffield Hallam Students’ Union continues to have a policy to stand in solidarity with members of Hallam University College and Union (UCU). Strike action is always the last option for staff. They would prefer to be at work, helping students to learn, providing student support and continuing with important research but many staff feel they are left with little option.

As students, we must acknowledge that the University staff teaching conditions are our learning conditions.  We support students and staff who may wish to stand in solidarity with all staff members who will be part of the strike to join the picket line, and that students who are concerned about crossing a picket line, can hold meetings in the Students'  Union meeting rooms (subject to availability).

The University have created FAQs which you can find at MyHallam or you can follow @hallamhelp on Twitter.  Students who are affected will be contacted directly by their Department with details of the specific measures being put in place.

If you have questions or concerns, you should continue to use your normal channels to academic staff and other services.  If you are feeling anxious as a result of this strike action you can also take advantage of the University’s Student Support Services.

If you are dissatisfied with the alternative arrangements put in place by your department, it is best to raise this via the email address within the FAQs.  However, if you remain unsatisfied, you can submit a complaint via the University’s complaints procedure

The Student Union's Advice Centre can support you through the process, including if you need to take the complaint to the next stage.

You are advised to keep copies of any correspondence you have with the University / any emails you send, plus details of the teaching or assessments that have been affected and the impact this has had on you and your learning. 

In addition to this,  the Office for the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) has issued information for advisers regarding industrial action: https://www.oiahe.org.uk/student-advisers/supporting-students-with-complaints-arising-from-industrial-action/ and students may wish to look at this website.  Students should also be mindful that tuition fees are not used just to pay for teaching, and financial compensation is unlikely to be as simple as getting reimbursement for lost teaching time.  However, some students will have a valid claim for financial compensation depending on the way in which they have been financially disadvantaged by the strike action and therefore should use the complaints process as outlined above. 

Sheriff Muhammed- President Sheffield Hallam Students' Union