Workers have collected over 2,700 signatures on a petition supporting the strikers, mainly from students and local people.
A note on their sandwich read, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch!” after bosses tried to bribe strikers back to work with sandwiches.
UCU union members at the south
They are battling vicious new contracts that slash sick pay, cut holidays and impose longer working hours.
Striker Nadia told Socialist Worker that bosses were piling pressure on workers with threats of redundancies. “There are interviews where we have to go to apply for our jobs again set up next week,” she said.
“It’s a tactic to break the strike. But we have to fight now—because if we don’t, this kind of attack will happen everywhere. People won’t be able to go and get a better job in another college.”
“I teach literacy to people who can’t read or write. They come here every day—they’re dedicated. It’s pretty depressing that services they need are being cut.”
College boss Mark Silverman claims he has to make changes to workers’ contracts because the college has no money. Yet he pocketed a 13 percent pay rise last year—the biggest rise of any principal in
Workers are furious with his claims that they are putting the college at risk by striking, or that they don’t care about students. “In the long term, this college won’t exist if he carries on,” said
The strike has won massive support among trade unionists, students and ordinary working class people. But some strikers say the national union could be doing more.
Frank, a picket at Brixton, told Socialist Worker, “The UCU is supposed to be organising a national speaking tour. But every meeting we’ve spoken in has been organised locally. The national organisation seems to be dragging its heels—we want them to get their finger out.”
Lambeth College workers plan to meet with strikers from the Ritzy cinema and firefighters in Brixton to join the People’s Assembly march in central
And there is a national day of action in support of the strike on Wednesday of next week. It’s an opportunity for everyone to do something to build support for the strikers, so they can pile the pressure on Silverman and win.
Reballots have opened the way to bigger struggle