Workers at Bradford university are on strike to defend jobs and conditions. The Unison union members, representing cleaners, cooks, gardeners, technicians, security guards and admin staff, began a three-day strike on Wednesday.
They plan a further walkout on Tuesday of next week.
Patrick is the Unison branch secretary at the university. He told Socialist Worker that workers are on strike over “ongoing restructures and potential redundancies”.
Earlier in the year, bosses threatened to make around 200 staff redundant by Christmas.
“We’ve tried to negotiate with management but they’ve not given us any indication of how many redundancies we’re looking at,” he said.
“So we’ve gone out on strike and said we’re going on strike until you tell us – no redundancies.”
The turnout on the picket line was bigger on Thursday, the second day of the action, than on day one. Picketers were determined to save jobs and their picket was lively.
Many passersby showed solidarity with strikers. Students and other university workers brought tea, coffee and food to the pickets.
Unison members voted for strikes by 80 percent in a ballot that ran over the summer. The turnout was 60 percent – beating the 50 percent threshold in the Tories’ Trade Union Act.
There was a buoyant mood on the picket line as confident strikers played music. “We’re doing really well, really strong,” said Patrick.
“Staff want to show how annoyed and upset and stressed out they are. They just want someone to listen to them.
“We’ll be out here until we get some sort of deal.”