Morale hits the pits at Anglia

July 28, 1995

A majority of staff in one faculty at Anglia Polytechnic University has passed a vote of no confidence in management following substantial redundancies.

The 16 redundancies in the faculty of the built environment, science and technology, one of which was compulsory, were part of a complete restructuring following poor student recruitment, mainly on engineering courses.

Staff have now asked governors to take action, following the secret ballot which also showed that a majority of staff had no confidence in the faculty management's new strategy and felt that there had not been adequate consultation about the redundancies.

The ballot, which was organised independently of Natfhe, involved all academic and support staff irrespective of union membership. Sixty-eight out of 96 papers were returned. Some 52 staff said they had no confidence in the management with only three saying they did.

Roger Welch, the Natfhe branch secretary at Chelmsford, said that staff had the commitment and ability to ensure that the courses succeeded. "However, both the faculty and the university managements ignore the outcome of the ballot at their peril," he said.

Ian Mehrtons, assistant dean of the faculty, admitted that morale had been very low as a result of redundancies, although they were trying to change this. New courses had been developed in areas that were more attractive to students, such as telecommunications and software.

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