Socialist Worker

Scottish FE action + United Colleges + Liverpool university

Issue No. 2750

Strikers at Fife College

Strikers at Fife College

College lecturers across Scotland plan a further two‑day strike in a continuing dispute over the replacement of lecturers with instructors on lower pay and with worse conditions.

The EIS-Fela union has called action on Tuesday and Wednesday next week.

The following week it is escalating the strikes to three days a week.

Lecturers have responded strongly to the call for strikes because they know this is a crucial battle. Many colleges have already signalled they want to go ahead with replacing lecturers.

The strikes have the potential to embarrass the Scottish National Party in the run-up to the 6 May elections. It’s good the EIS is escalating the action, and it must continue to do so—if necessary to an all-out strike.

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Workload action at United Colleges

nWorkers at United Colleges Group have voted overwhelmingly for strikes to defend their conditions.

The UCU union members in London are fighting imposed changes to their contracts that increase workloads. 

Some 99 percent of union members who voted backed strikes, and 100 percent supported action short of a strike. 

Bosses imposed changes at the start of the autumn term last year that removed timetabled non-teaching hours for lecturers. The changes have added an extra hour of teaching a week to timetables and have seen hourly-paid staff lose money. 

The union is set to restart negotiations with bosses after the Easter break. It would be in a stronger position if it named strike dates in advance to increase the pressure on management. 

Liverpool university jobs battle

UCU union members at Liverpool university have delivered their highest ever turnout in a strike ballot to save jobs. Some 84 percent of union members who voted supported strikes and 90 percent backed action short of a strike. The turnout was 60 percent. 

The union branch said the turnout figure sent an “emphatic message” that workers are prepared to fight back.

Bosses want to make 47 staff redundant in the Health and Life Sciences department. 

Branch president Anthony O’Hanlon said the attack has caused “huge anger”. “To attack jobs in that faculty during a pandemic is despicable,” he said

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