Leaked email revealing plans to make over 40 redundancies at UoM

The university claimed to be planning to make 48 staff redundant and cutting salaries by up to a third

A leaked email appears to reveal how University of Manchester Conferences Limited (UMC), owned by the university, is planning to make 48 members staff redundant and drastically cut wages.

This follows last month’s implementation of the living wage for all staff of all ages after years of campaigns carried out by staff and students.

UMC provides catering services across campus and in the University’s Halls of Residence. They run the Chancellors Hotel, The Chancellors Collection, FoodOnCampus, FoodInResidence, and BarsInResidence on behalf of the University.

In the leaked email, it was claimed that 60 out of UMC’s 283 staff have been told that their jobs are not safe anymore. It claims that they will go ahead with compulsory redundancies if less than 43 of these 60 do not accept voluntary severance.

Alongside this, UMC are allegedly planning to impose inferior contracts on the remaining staff, cutting salaries by up to a third.

Staff and students campaigned for several years for the living wage to be implemented across UMC. It appeared that their efforts were not in vain, as it was announced that all UMC staff would be paid at least the living wage as set by the Living Wage Foundation, which currently stands at £8.25.

The company had said that the pay increase was just one of their planned actions within catering services, aiming to develop and improve “their financial performance and service quality.”

The National Living Wage is also only to be paid to those over the age of 25, whereas UMC announced they planned to pay £8.25 regardless of the age of their staff.

Reports recently stated  that the 103 staff are paid over £100,000 which, according to data obtained by the Taxpayers Alliance, this stands at almost one per cent of the University’s total employees.

The University of Manchester had the 23rd highest number of staff paid above £100,000 in the country. There will be a meeting organised by the University of Manchester’s Students’ Union to begin a campaign against these job losses on Tuesday the 15th of March at 5.30pm in Room 4 of the Students’ Union.

A University of Manchester spokesperson has confirmed these claims, commenting “following a review of catering services the University has opened a voluntary severance scheme for FoodOnCampus and FoodInResidence staff. Consultations have been arranged and support and advice is being made available to all affected staff”.