University of Nottingham - UCU members stand down

June 12, 2008

Two prominent members of the University and College Union branch at the University of Nottingham who posted a comment to the Times Higher Education website criticising their colleagues are to stand down from their posts. Macdonald Daly, vice-president of the UCU branch, and Sean Matthews, a UCU committee member, wrote an open letter accusing unnamed colleagues of "irresponsible, opportunistic and unethical conduct" in the way they had supported a campaign to defend academic freedom following two anti-terror arrests on campus. A staff member and a student were arrested last month and held for six days on suspicion of possessing extremist material before being released. The UCU members said their decisions to stand down had been made well before they wrote the letter in a personal capacity. The president of the UCU at Nottingham said the letter, which drew angry responses from some academics, did not represent branch policy. "There are some points of overlap with the UCU position but other areas where the two diverge," he said.

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