Endorsement from Ms Grace Krause and Dr Josh Robinson, Cardiff University

Grace Krause is a postgraduate student at Cardiff University, a research assistant on a fixed-term contract at University of Bath, and an anti-casualisation officer for Cardiff UCU. Josh Robinson is a senior lecturer in the School of English, Communications and Philosophy at Cardiff University, and the lead negotiator on the UCU committee at Cardiff. Here is their endorsement video for the #Grady4GS campaign! Thank you for your support, Grace and Josh!

You can see it on Twitter or on YouTube (below). The transcript is at the bottom.


JOSH ROBINSON: Grace and I’ve been working together over the last year or so, and negotiating improvements to the ways in which the university engages with postgraduate students carrying out teaching, and we’ve just had major success which is that management here has agreed to set up a working group to look at the status of postgraduate students who teach, and we’re very hopeful that this working group will move toward contracted employee status for those students who also teach, which will be a huge, huge improvement of conditions under which our postgraduate students carrying out teaching here. So quite excited about that.

GRACE KRAUSE: These negotiations built on about 4 years of organising that has happened here among postgraduate students. And through being involved in those activities, and through the wider anti-precarity work that is done here at Cardiff UCU, I’ve become very aware that a lot of the time, especially the most precariously employed workers here, have in the past not felt that Cardiff UCU represented them properly, and for some people that feeling still persists.

GRACE KRAUSE: And this among everything else is one of the reasons that I endorse Jo Grady for General Secretary of UCU, because her manifesto inspires proper hope among some of the most precariously employed workers at universities that things might change for the better. In particular, the high importance she gives to casualisation speaks to us, as does her proposal to have more progressive subscription rates which will benefit lower-paid employees and to establish a coordinating position for anti-casualisation work across the UK.

JOSH ROBINSON: This is really the first time in 12 years of UCU membership that I’ve been excited to vote for a General Secretary. I’m really excited by Jo’s manifesto, in particular because it sets out not just a wishlist of what education should look like, or you know some policy changes that we’d quite like a government to make, but she’s got a real vision that’s expressed in the manifesto that comes forward from the research and the activism that she’s been involved in. A real vision of how our union needs to change in order to build the power that we need to create the changes that we want.