UCU Strikes - Submitting a Complaint

 

Along with a number of universities, members of staff at the University of Salford are currently undertaking strike action, including action short of strike. This has been taking place over selected dates and started at the beginning of December 2021. More information can be found on the University's FAQ page here 

 

We know that some students teaching may have been impacted by this current strike action and understandably this has raised some queries and concerns. The Advice Centre has put together a resource pack to help, if you have been negatively impacted by the strike action and wish to submit a complaint as a result of this

 

When it may be appropriate to submit a complaint:

If you feel that the strike action has been detrimental to your academic learning and that it has negatively impacted your student experience you may wish to submit a complaint. A complaint would only be feasible if staff have not set alternative work or study, have failed to make alternative arrangements for teaching such as rescheduling sessions or you believe the alternative provision put in place is not fit for purpose.

 

How to use the complaints procedure:

 

Stage 1 – Contact the School 

The complaints procedure is split into 3 stages. However, when raising a complaint which is connected to strike action we focus on 2 stages only.

Stage 1 is an informal complaint, which is where we will start. This is a letter, e-mail or oral complaint submitted within 20 working days of the incident taking place (for example, in this instance a cancelled session or continued period of interruption) and should be raised with relevant staff in your school. We recommend for issues related to impacts resulting from strike action these are dircted to the schools via their main inboxes - please ensure you clearly state in the subject line that it is a '1st stage complaint' 

  • Arts, Media, and Creative Technologies – am-admin@salford.ac.uk 
  • Business and Law – SBS-Hub@salford.ac.uk
  • Health and Society – HealthSociety-School-Reception@salford.ac.uk
  • Science, Engineering & Environment – SEESchoolEnquiries@salford.ac.uk

When submitting a complaint, it is important that you provide as much detail as possible about your complaint and include any supporting evidence. For strike action this would include information such as:

  • How long the disruption to your learning went on for
  • Dates and time of academic sessions impacted
  • Details of alternative work (if any was set – if none was set then please include this)
  • How this has negatively impacted your studies

You should also include  what actions you would like to see arising from your complaint

You should receive response within 20 working days. 

 

 

Stage 2 – Formalise your complaint

If you are unhappy with the response to your 1st stage complaint , you can proceed directly to the next stage (which is outlined under stage 3 of the university complaints process*)   At this stage of the process your comalint will be considered by an independent panel, of which the members will come from a school different to your own. 

Again, you will need to reiterate the points outlined in your 1st stage complaint and this time include 

  • Reasons why you believe the response to your 1st stage complaint did not adequately address your concerns raised. 

Following submission of your complaint at stage 2 you may be asked to attend a panel meeting, our advisers can also provide support with these meetings, and attend with you as support. 

We would recommend that before you submit your 2nd stage complaint you seek support from the Advice Centre. You can book an appointment with us online here or email us @ advicecentre-ussu@salford.ac.uk .

 

Strike Action – Template complaint statement 

When submitting a complaint, it is important that you provide as much detail as possible about your issue. 

It would also be helpful to include what actions you would like to see arising from your complaint. complaint. We have included a template to help format your stage 1 complaint, however, please add in any extra information that you deem to be important and relevant.

 

*Before submitting this template, please delete all text in red and input the correct information where the text is blue.

 

Dear 

I am writing this complaint as my academic studies have been disrupted due to the current strike action. 

The first lecture/workshop/seminar/lab (deleted as appropriate) to be disrupted was (include name of session). This was meant to be held at (date and time) in (room information). 

  • Repeat this to include details for further sessions that you have had disrupted.

 

 

If you did not receive any alternative study work or teaching has not been rescheduled, then you may include this section. 

I have not received any alternative study or any arrangements for the session to be rescheduled and this therefore has negatively impacted my studies and student experience as I have missed out on vital teaching time. 

  • List any specific content that was missed 
  • List any impact this will have on your ability to complete assessments linked to this module
  • List any practical experience/ access to equipment you have lost

 

 

If you have not received adequate alterative study work, you may include this section
Although I was notified about the strike action prior to it occurring and  was set some alternative studyI feel this alterative study was not adequate replacement for the teaching I missed out on. 

  • List the reasons why you believe this alternative study was not adequate – for example: 
  • The teaching sessions was meant to be (number of hours/minutes) long and the work set took approximately (number of hours/minutes) long. As this has such a large disparity, I do not feel it is adequate replacement for non-teaching. 
  • The lecture/workshops/seminar/lab objective was (include session objective). The work that was set aimed to (describe what you felt the objective of the work set was) and I do not feel that I can confidently say I have reached the original learning objective through this untaught and alternative work set. 

 

Include a list of how the strike action has negatively impacted you, this will be different for every student. Some examples may be how it has financially impacted you; it may have impacted your mental health; it may have impacted your communication with academic staff and prevented you from seeking support or guidance.

 

I am hoping for this complaint to be resolved by (add in your outcome). I look forward to a timely response.

Many thanks

(Signed)