Minutes 22.06.14

Women’s Group Meeting June Minutes


Michelle Bastian, Rachel Travers, Penny Travlou, Ola Uduku, Kate Carter, Soledad Garcia Ferrari

Issues Discussed

  • Nursery Provision

A discussion was had about the needs of ECA and CHSS staff in general as regards to nursery / child care. it was observed that the new nursery was difficult to get to for staff with 0900am commitments at ECA. Also the cost of the new nursery was expensive.

OU agreed to investigate with HR whether there might be the possibility to have nearby such as Childcair advertised as being near to the ECA campus and finding out which of these companies might be willing to give discounts. This is taking into account the fact that kids company is a franchise and therefore advertisement of other childcare companies should not be an issue.

  • Child Care Top up Savings

It was  asked whether the group could investigate whether the University would consider allowing to save more tax deductible income towards child care, as similar to the voluntary ‘bike-to-work’ scheme. Soledad to follow this up with Ola at HR

  • Friday Afterschool Care

Related to childcare for primary and early secondary school, the possibility was raised of having a Friday afternoon club/childcare scheme for staff. However it was felt we would need to do a survey of interest and current childcare provision amongst staff. OU also to talk with HR other staff to set up questionnaire format.

  • Other Issues Discussed

A general discussion was had about the visibility of women in ECA at senior positions – there was a perceived view that there were not a lot of staff at this level or role. In relation to this there was also the feeling that women were to be found in more administrative senior staff roles .

Also there was a discussion about how maternity leave was covered and the return to work support in place. It was felt that other universities of similar status had better practices in place that were more favourable to women and parents who needed to take maternity/paternity leave.

  • Name of Group

The name of group was debated also. There was a feeling that possibly the ‘Women’ title to the group gave it a certain character however there was a contra feeling that it was important to have the name within the title as there were gender issues at ECA and UoE level however the idea of having a more inclusive part to the title would be something that could be debated further on the blog.

  • Memorial

A one minute silence was had in remembrance of Jeanette Lennartson, lecturer in Graphic Design, who recently passed away.

  • Blog / Media Presence

It was agreed that the Group would have better publicity and ‘visibility’ if it had a media presence – Rachel Travers agreed to be the support staff Rep for the blog and both Maiire Cox and Michelle Bastian agreed to help with its set up.

  • Next Meeting

It was agreed that the monthly meeting schedule would be kept, and also that the location would change or move to cover different staff locations. Information about the next meeting is planned to also be available on the proposed website./blog.

Ola Uduku

22nd June 2014