University of East Anglia caterers spike ‘humiliating’ policy

Catering staff at the University of East Anglia have won a victory over a “blatantly unfair” clocking on system.

Workers were having 15 minutes of their wages docked if they clocked in three minutes late or out three minutes early, despite not receiving any payment if they worker over their time.

UNISON was spurred to action after a member of staff not in catering spotted a notice in the cafe “reminding” staff about the rule.

The spotter said it was an ‘embarrassment’ to the university and it was clear that the workers were angry at the notices.

But UNISON branch secretary Amanda Chenery-Howes quickly approached UEA’s new director of people and culture to raise the problem. The director took immediate steps to put an end to the policy.

Amanda said the branch was “delighted” with the result, adding that it was a great example of trade unions standing up for fairness at work.

“This is a major achievement for the UEA branch,” she said.

“We are always working towards fairness at work, and this was such a blatantly unfair policy that it could not be allowed to stand.

“Catering staff are among our lowest-paid members, and it was not right that they also had this deliberately humiliating policy imposed upon them.

“We are very pleased that we were eventually able to get the university to see sense and scrap the policy.”

University staff across the UK are currently voting on strike action over pay. Read about it here.