Statute VII, Part VI: Grievance procedure
This procedure was replaced by Statute VII and its related Ordinances which were agreed by the University’s governing body, the Council, in May 2017 and ratified by the Privy Council in April 2018. The amended Statute and related Ordinances were implemented with effect from 1 January 2019 with a revised redundancy procedure approved in July 2020 effective from 1 August 2020.
30. Purpose of Part VI
The aim of this Part is to settle or redress individual grievances promptly, fairly and so far as may be, within the faculty, school or other relevant area by methods acceptable to all parties.
The grievances to which this Part applies are ones by members of the academic staff concerning their appointments or employment where those grievances relate:
(a) to matters affecting themselves as individuals; or
(b) to matters affecting their personal dealings or relationships with other staff of the University,
not being matters for which express provision is made elsewhere in this Statute.
32. Exclusions and informal procedures
(1) If other remedies within the faculty, school or other relevant area have been exhausted the member of the academic staff may raise the matter with the Head of the faculty, school or other relevant area.
(2) If the member of the academic staff is dissatisfied with the result of an approach under sub-paragraph (1) or if the grievance directly concerns the Head of the faculty, school or other relevant area, the member may apply in writing to the Vice-Chancellor for redress of the grievance.
(3) If it appears to the Vice-Chancellor that the matter has been finally determined under Part III, IV or V or that the grievance is trivial or invalid, he or she may dismiss it summarily, or take no action upon it. If it so appears to the Vice Chancellor he or she shall inform the member and the Grievance Committee accordingly.
(4) If the Vice-Chancellor is satisfied that the subject matter of the grievance could properly be considered with (or form the whole or any part of):
(a) a complaint under Part III;
(b) a determination under Part IV; or
(c) an appeal under Part V
he or she shall defer action upon it under this Part until the relevant complaint, determination or appeal has been heard or the time for instituting it has passed and he or she shall notify the member and the Grievance Committee accordingly.
(5) If the Vice-Chancellor does not reject the complaint under sub-paragraph (3) or if he or she does not defer action upon it under sub-paragraph (4) he or she shall decide whether it would be appropriate, having regard to the interests of justice and fairness, for him or her to seek to dispose of it informally. If he or she so decides he or she shall notify the member and proceed accordingly.
33. Grievance Committee procedure
If the grievance has not been disposed of informally under paragraph 32(5), the Vice-Chancellor shall refer the matter to the Grievance Committee for consideration.
34. Composition of Grievance Committee
The Grievance Committee to be appointed by the Council shall comprise:
(a) a Chair; and
(b) one member of the Council not being a person employed by the University; and
(c) one member of the academic staff nominated by the Senate.
35. Procedure in connection with determinations; and right to representation
The procedure in connection with the consideration and determination of grievances shall be determined in Ordinances in such a way as to ensure that the aggrieved person and any person against whom the grievance lies shall have the right to be heard at a hearing and to be accompanied by a friend or representative.
36. Notification of decisions
The Committee shall inform the Council whether the grievance is or is not well-found and if it is well-found the Committee shall make such proposals for the redress of the grievance as it sees fit.
Provisions as to the Vice-Chancellor
1. The Council may request its Chair to remove the Vice-Chancellor from office for good cause in accordance with the procedure described in this Annex.
(1) A complaint seeking the removal from office of the Vice-Chancellor for good cause may be made by not less than three members of the Council to the Chair of the Council.
(2) If it appears to the Chair of the Council, on the material before him or her, that the complaint raises a prima-facie case and that this could, if proved, constitute good cause for dismissal or removal from office he or she shall request the Council to appoint a Tribunal to hear and determine the matter.
(3) If it appears to the Chair of the Council that a complaint made to him or her under sub-paragraph (1) does not raise a prima-facie case or is trivial or invalid, he or she may recommend to the Council that no further action be taken upon it.
(4) When the Council has appointed a Tribunal under sub-paragraph (2) it shall instruct a solicitor or other suitable person to formulate a charge or charges and to present, or arrange for the presentation of, the charges before the Tribunal.
(5) A Tribunal appointed by the Council shall comprise:
(a) an independent Chair; and
(b) one member of the Council, not being a person employed by the University; and
(c) one member of the academic staff.
(6) Subject to the principles of justice and fairness the Tribunal may determine its own procedure.
(7) The Tribunal shall send its reasoned decision on any charge referred to it together with its findings of fact regarding the charge and its recommendations, if any, as to the appropriate penalty to the Chair of the Council and to the Vice-Chancellor drawing attention to the period of time within which any appeal should be made.
(8) Persons appointed to hear such an appeal shall be persons independent of the University holding, or having held, judicial office or being barristers or solicitors of at least ten years’ standing and the person so appointed shall, subject to the principles of justice and fairness, determine the procedure to be adopted in hearing the appeal.
(9) A person appointed shall send the reasoned decision on the appeal, together with any findings of fact different from those come to by the Tribunal and his or her recommendations, if any, as to the appropriate penalty, to the Vice Chancellor and to the Chair of the Council.
(10) Where a charge or charges have been upheld by the Tribunal and not dismissed on appeal, the Chair of the Council shall decide whether or not to dismiss the Vice-Chancellor.
2. Where a complaint is to be referred to a Tribunal under this Statute, the Chair of the Council may suspend the Vice-Chancellor from his or her duties and may exclude the Vice-Chancellor from the precincts of the University or any part thereof without loss of salary.
3. ‘Good cause’ in this Annex has the same meaning as in paragraph 5 of this Statute.
4. For the purpose of the removal of the Vice-Chancellor for incapacity on medical grounds, Part IV of this Statute shall have effect subject to the following modifications:
(a) for references to a member of the academic staff there shall be substituted references to the Vice-Chancellor;
(b) for any reference to the office of Vice-Chancellor there shall be substituted a reference to the office of Chair of the Council;
(c) for paragraph 22 there shall be substituted:
‘22. If the Board determines that the Vice-Chancellor should be required to retire on medical grounds, it shall ask the Chair as the appropriate officer, to decide whether or not to terminate the appointment of the Vice-Chancellor on those medical grounds.’Back to the top