Dundee UCU’s branch president Sharon Sweeney was the proud recipient of this year’s STUC Equality Rep award, presented by the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon MSP at STUC Congress in Aviemore in April.
Sharon was presented with the award due to her outstanding work on promoting equality and tackling discrimination. Sharon has pursued the disability equality agenda, and through negotiations with her employer has successfully negotiated a Disability Leave Policy, one of only a few in higher education. The policy includes provision for disability leave in long term absence situations, so that disabled staff are not penalised or subject to unfair absence management procedures within the sickness absence process. Following the agreement of this policy, Sharon then instigated a UCU training session together with UCU’s National Head of Equality, Helen Carr, and the Human Resources Director of Dundee University, to show the positive outcomes for good negotiations and best practice around Disability Leave policies.