Socialist Worker

New strikes ahead in universities - now step up the fight over pay

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2387

Strikers at Conel college in December last year

Strikers at Conel college in December last year (Pic: Kelvin Williams)

University workers in the UCU, Unison and EIS unions are set to strike on 6 February over pay.

The action follows two successful strikes last year. The first, on 31 October, involved UCU, Unite and Unison members in higher education. 

The second, on 3 December, involved UCU, Unite Unison members in higher and further education, along with workers in Scotland’s EIS union.

The UCU has also called a series of two-hour strikes for higher education workers. The first was set to take place on Thursday of this week from 11am.

Further two-hour strikes are set for Tuesday of next week from 2pm and for Monday 10 February from 9am.

But many lecturers want union leaders to call harder hitting action that can have a bigger impact.

Some have launched a petition demanding that the UCU escalates the action instead of effectively de-escalating with two-hour strikes.

Many are also outraged that some university bosses are threatening to dock a day’s pay for a two-hour strike.

Mark Campbell is a member of the UCU’s national executive committee and a union rep at London Metropolitan University.

He told Socialist Worker, “Last year’s strikes were a big success and showed that there’s a mood to fight. We urgently need to escalate our campaign over pay. 

“Every branch should hold meetings and pass motions to put the pay campaign strategy back on track. Lecturers need to get to the four regional consultation meetings taking place next week.

“We must make it clear that they want to escalate the action.”


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