UCL UCU Standing Orders

These standing orders are to be read in addition to UCL UCU’s Branch Rules (adopted at AGM on 5 June 2019).

Standing orders are operational interpretations of rules, but do not substitute for them. 

1. Organisation and representation

UCL UCU organises members across the university in diverse roles. Given the size and diverse nature of the university, it may be necessary to have more than one level of organisation.

Following the merger of the Institute of Education UCU with UCL UCU, special provision is made for the incorporation of IOE representatives in our standing orders.

Officers and Committee

UCL UCU aims to have represented on the branch committee:
    1. At least one member drawn from each School (SLASH, SLMS, BEAMS) and professional services.
    2. At least two members of IOE staff.
    3. At least one representative of each staff group (academic, teaching fellow, research staff, professional services, postgraduate).
    4. A wide representation across equality strands is strongly encouraged, and if possible the ‘equality officer’ position should be expanded into an equality subgroup.
    5. Job shares for officer positions are also encouraged.

Local representatives

There is no rule on the number of local representatives, and job shares are possible. Members may volunteer as ‘contacts’, and seek election as representatives. The procedure for election is to arrange for a meeting to be held in the section concerned, usually to also consider a local matter of concern, and to elect a representative.

2. Delegate democracy

UCL UCU adheres to the principle of delegate democracy. This has two elements:
    1. Any principle that is established by the passing of a motion at a quorate branch general meeting becomes ‘policy’ for the branch.
    2. Any ‘delegate’, which includes branch officers, executive committee members and conference delegates, are expected to abide by this policy.

Where there is no branch policy on a question, the expectation is that delegates will act as ‘representatives’ and thoughtfully consider the issue being aware of nationally-agreed UCU policy. 

Where a question arises that touches on, but does not explicitly contradict, branch policy, delegates should abide by a broad interpretation of that policy unless and until the issue is further clarified by a branch motion.

Note that ‘policy’ can be either positive (to do something) or negative (not to do something), and short-lived (an instruction) or permanent (a general principle).

Only quorate general meetings of members can determine a general matter of branch policy. However, during an official strike, policy decisions relating narrowly to the lawful conduct of the strike and its campaign in furtherance of the trade dispute may be decided by a strike meeting called by branch officers.