Socialist Worker

Scottish lecturers kick off UCU strike wave

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2243

A picket line this morning at Edinburgh University  (Pic: Ben Wray)

A picket line this morning at Edinburgh University (Pic: Ben Wray)

Lecturers across Scotland are striking today (Thursday) in protest at attacks on their pensions.

UCU union members at Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Heriot-Watt, Strathclyde, St Andrews and the Open universities are taking part in the action.

Carlo Morelli, president of the UCU branch at Dundee University, told Socialist Worker that pickets there had won support from other workers.

“Some clerical and technical workers came to chat to us on the picket lines,” he said. “They are facing attacks on their pensions as well—and say they might join us on the picket lines when we strike again next week.

“A few students came to show their support too, and council workers have been tooting their horns as they drove past. We’ve had messages of support from the PCS and CWU unions.”

As well as the strikes in Scotland, lecturers at Warwick university in Coventry also struck today to defend pensions.

Lecturers face a myriad of attacks on their pensions, pay, jobs and conditions. They have voted for strikes against all the attacks in colleges and universities across Britain.

The next strikes over pensions will take place tomorrow, Friday, when university lecturers in Wales walk out. Strikes will then hit Northern Ireland on Monday and England on Tuesday.

The big day of strikes is set to be Thursday 24 March, when lecturers in colleges and universities will strike together to defend pensions, jobs and pay—more than 120,000 workers.

It will be the biggest strike yet under the Tory government. Other public sector workers face the same attacks—they should be pushing for coordinated strikes against the Tory government’s cuts.

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