18th November, 2020
Dear Ms Ajufo,
I write to protest about the deeply disturbing news that UEL is disproportionately targeting lecturers and professors who are leaders of the University and College Union. I have read your statement that:
“We are focusing on our ten-year Vision to become the UK’s leading careers-intensive University. I look forward to working with the Board of Governors, the University Executive Board and the wider University of East London community in the coming weeks and months to pursue this goal and put the University in a strong position to compete, flourish and thrive.”
Despite the Alternative Business Plan produced by UEL staff that would address financial shortfalls while retaining staff and meeting student needs, you have ploughed ahead with ‘voluntary’ redundancies and are now lining up 12 further staff members for compulsory redundancy.
To make matters worse Social Science professors have been disproportionately targeted, posing a severe risk to world-leading research in the Centre for Cultural Studies, Centre for Migration, Refugees and Belonging and Centre for Narrative Research.
Turning your back on global social developments to end colonial perspectives and enable working class students and Women and People of Colour equal access to a university education will not “put the University in a strong position to compete, flourish and thrive.”
I implore you to go back to the negotiating table and find a way forward before discarding these outstanding lecturers and professors who have contributed so much to build the reputation of UEL.
Diane Langford, writer/journalist