Stop the Operations Restructuring Plan at Durham University

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At the end of Epiphany Term 2018/2019, Durham University began to roll out plans to restructure college operations, with the aim of streamlining staff and centralising operations. This means that long-serving staff members are facing redundancy, events that enhance the student experience will be reduced, and that the identities of each college are at risk. This proposal was only released to students on the 15th March and will remain in its consultation stage until the 10th of April, with a final vote on its implementation set to be held on the 29th of April.
 
This is only stage one of a long-term restructuring process. Further stages might include the streamlining of other services currently offered by colleges, such as catering, housekeeping, and general student support staff, including positions providing welfare support.

We wish to voice our opposition to this proposal in the strongest terms, and request Durham University and its Council to take the following actions:
 
Durham University Executive:
-        To delay approval of this proposal to a time such that meaningful consultation can take place in Easter Term
-        To consider modifications to the proposal in light of all feedback, including the possibility of abandoning the proposal
-        To provide clarity on the scope of future proposals that may be made as part of the wider Colleges and Catering Operations Review
-        To review its procedures for the evaluation of the impact on students of its proposals and decisions
-        To retract and apologise for the misrepresentations it is making in relation to the level of consultation it has held with students to date
 
University Council:
-        To call in this proposal for consideration at its next meeting and require Council approval to the proposal before any implementation, taking into account potential risks to reputation and ability to deliver Wider Student Experience aspects of University Strategy
-        To review the University’s procedures for the evaluation of the impact on students of its proposals and decisions
-        To investigate the process of the development of the proposal prior to release to students (including staff consultation) and assure themselves as to whether or not suitable procedure has been followed
 
The consultation period for phase one of the proposal will last until the 10th of April. We implore our fellow students, staff and alumni of Durham University, along with their friends, family and anyone who has benefitted from the collegiate system at Durham, to sign this petition to emphasise the widespread concern over the potential impacts of the restructure plans.
 
Additionally, we encourage you all to email any complaints, concerns and questions you may have about how student experience will be affected to wsestudents.consultation@durham.ac.uk or fill out the feedback form at www.dur.ac.uk/businessimprovement/local/haveyoursay 


Thank you for taking the time to read our concerns,
 
Students of Durham University