2 months ago

Universities and Colleges Strike Across glasgow

The Scotsman
The Scotsman
Strikes university and colleges Scotland: Disruption at universities and colleges as strikes hit Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee could continue into 2024, union warns
Aberdeen, Dundee, Glasgow, Strathclyde and Stirling universities are all being impacted by strikes this week

Disruption at universities could continue into next year unless employers come up with a better pay offer, a union has warned as members walk out on strike.

Staff at five universities in Scotland are taking strike action this week in ongoing disputes over pay and working conditions.

It comes after the University and College Union (UCU) rejected a pay award for 2023/24 from the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA), which the union said was worth just 5 per cent for most UCU members.
The universities affected this week are Aberdeen, Dundee, Glasgow, Strathclyde and Stirling, with lecturers, researchers, librarians, administrators and IT staff among those on strike.

More than 1,000 support staff in universities across Scotland are also striking from Monday in a dispute over pay. Unison members in four universities – Glasgow Caledonian, Glasgow, Dundee and Glasgow School of Art – are taking rolling action over a two-week period after rejecting a “real-terms pay cut”.

UCU Scotland official Mary Senior said no member of staff wants to hurt students by taking industrial action, but that members are being forced into it.

She told BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme: “We’re calling on the employers to come back and put a better offer on the table in terms of pay. Our claim is for RPI [Retail Price Index] plus 2 per cent or £4,000 whichever is higher.

“We haven’t seen any movement from the employer since the start of the year on pay so they really do need to do better on pay and show that they’re going to make some meaningful changes to the working conditions, the workload, the casual contracts and so on.

“I think employers need to know that we are not going away. We have action this week in five universities in Scotland, we’ve got more universities in Scotland next week and across the UK that will be taking five days of strike action before the month is out and we also have a new ballot which opens tomorrow so ballot papers will be landing through our members’ letter boxes on Wednesday. So they risk real disruption ongoing in this sector into the end of this year and into 2024.”

UCEA said the pay award recognised the disproportionate impact of inflation on lower incomes, awarding as much as 8 per cent to some.

UCU branches at Stirling and Aberdeen are also taking action as the union claims those universities are deducting “punitive” levels of pay from staff who took part in a marking and assessment boycott.

Staff at Stirling university are in the middle of three weeks of strike action. As well as the ongoing strike action, the union has also announced plans to re-ballot members, which will allow action to be taken throughout the rest of 2023

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