Monday, 22 October 2007

Unified union

Surely one of the first strengths of a union is, well, union. Something smells when unity between members becomes something to be carefully controlled and orchestrated. Take the email below, for example. It was sent from a union rep to the union members in a department. I assume. In actual fact, the header shows it to have been sent from John Roche, to a distribution list called John Roche.
Of course the recipient knows they have received it, but who else? Who are the other union members in the department? How can we get together? What if I want to contact them? Answer; ask John. Go through the rep. You will never know if the Associate Deans and other Management figures are part of the same union (or receiving the email regardless). It’s a matter of blind faith, of one-directional trust.

Why go to such lengths to disguise the recipients of a message intended for all union members in a department who know each other already but may not know they are part of the same union?

Email text from UCU and former NATFHE union rep Mr John Roche, School of Computing and IT, University of Wolverhampton sent the 14/02/2007 with title "Vote, vote, vote"


A large envelope from UCU has probably arrived in your post box.

Please read it and use your votes. Note the plural, you are voting for a lot of people.

If you wish to receive some advice on who to vote for OR even who I am voting for then please ask.

The ones to vote for are the ones who (to quote another union member) will contribute most to


"unified union and who will move it forwards whilst avoiding unnecessary divisions. "

Note no Harvard refrence :)

I shall be voting for Sally Hunt


Ah! A UNIFIED union! What a revelation.

But are all these anonymous university workers being asked to make up their own minds? But seriously, who needs a Harvard reference, surely the whole universe, knows what Sally wants.

A good exercise in propaganda, sent with love on valentines day. But please, Mr Roche, a bit of dignity to let people make up their own minds. Try reminding them that next time they can strike a red mark to foul their ballot paper. Not that it will make any difference, as UCU elections are invariably counted in terms of ‘the % of those who voted’. Then, anything is possible.

1 comment:

Howard Fredrics said...