No compulsory redundancies at Heriot-Watt University

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No compulsory redundancies at Heriot-Watt University

This petition had 1,745 supporters

This petition is about wanting Heriot-Watt University to withdraw the threat of compulsory redundancies, and to consult meaningfully with UCU and all the trade unions to avoid making unnecessary job cuts.

The story so far...

On March 3, 2017 Heriot-Watt University, announced plans to make 100 staff redundant – a saving of £4.25m and a reduction in 5 per cent of all staff employed at the Riccarton, Galashiels and Orkney campuses.

At the same time, the University also set out a two-year “recruitment chill”, which is likely to see a further job losses due to the non-replacement of approximately 100 more staff.

Furthermore, University management have repeatedly refused to rule out compulsory redundancies, despite the obvious impact on the student experience and the local economy.

The University have cited a “Brexit effect”, which had “creat[ed] uncertainty affecting postgraduate uptake”, as well as “the UK government’s immigration policies and messaging” as key factors.

However, last year alone they spent in excess of £9m on consultants.

The University is proceeding with plans to fully convert the James Watt Centre into a learning and teaching facility at the cost of £4m and plans to refurbish the Edinburgh campus library at the cost of £6m – neither are likely to improve student experience if staff numbers drop by approximately 200 by the end of 2018.

UCU wants Heriot Watt University to continue to be one of the best universities, and we want to support investment in the University.

What about the students?

These job cuts will adversely affect the student experience and course quality and choice.

We believe preserving the quality of the research and learning environment is key to creating a vibrant and innovative student experience.

But what can I do to help?

Please sign and widely share this petition, a petition that will be presented to University Court, and aimed at simply requesting the University refrain from making compulsory redundancies.

If you wish to express your concerns further, consider writing to your MP or MSP and/or email the University’s Principal, Professor Richard Williams, on

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