Lecturers at Manchester College are set to strike on Thursday of this week in an escalation of their dispute over job cuts.
Several lecturers were made redundant at the end of July, including many English for Speakers of Other Languages (Esol) lecturers.
Workers in the UCU union struck against 13 planned job cuts at the start of July after a 74 percent vote for strike action and 84 percent for action short of a strike.
Dave Swanson is the UCU branch secretary at Manchester College. He is among those who have been made redundant. “It is important that we are striking during enrolment,” he told Socialist Worker.
“This is a big step as we’ve never done it before. It will severely limit enrolment on the day. Activists met up on Sunday to plan picketing.
“After Thursday we will need to escalate the dispute and to move quickly in order to build momentum and have a better chance of winning.”
The attack on Dave, a member of the union’s national executive, is a serious attack on the UCU and part of an attempt by management to smash union organisation.
Management at Manchester College have also withdrawn all facility time for union reps.
Lecturers plan to hold a strike meeting on their first day of action to discuss their next steps.
Job cuts and course closures are hitting colleges and universities across Britain. A strong fight in Manchester can both encourage resistance and make bosses think twice before going on the offensive.
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