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Winchester University lecturers go on strike tomorrow in row over pay
LECTURERS at the University of Winchester will be on strike tomorrow (October 31) in a row over pay.
The one-day walkout by members of Unison, Unite and UCU (University and College Union) trade unions is part of a national protest against a proposed one per cent pay rise.
It is not yet known how many staff will take action.
In a statement, Dr Mick Jardine, UCU branch officer at the university, said: “The strike on October 31 has been called by UCU, Unite and Unison, the three largest unions in the Higher Education sector, because our employers will not sit down and negotiate with us. The vice chancellor at Winchester University is a member of the employers’ organization, UCEA. Instead they say that after four years of below inflation increases, it is now 'not fair' to students if we finally take action.
“The National Union of Students (NUS) has called for further, urgent negotiations between both sides with the aim of agreeing 'a fair and sustainable settlement for higher education staff'. UCU and our sister unions have agreed to this sensible suggestion, but the employers have not.
“In these circumstances, where the employers simply will not negotiate, we have no choice but to take action in support of the quality of educational provision – we are the ones who truly care about our students’ education.”
Professor Elizabeth Stuart, deputy vice-chancellor of the University of Winchester, said: “The University of Winchester is open as normal tomorrow (October 31). Though we anticipate that some lectures will be cancelled as a consequence of the strike, many classes will go ahead as planned.
“The university has sympathy for colleagues, particularly those on the lower end of the pay scale, who have seen low pay increases in recent years. The higher education sector as a whole is going through an unprecedented period of uncertainty with the full impact of the new fee regime yet to be felt, and so there is a need for caution.
“Strike action inevitably impacts most negatively upon students and the University regrets that the trade unions moved to strike action so quickly.”
A University of Southampton spokesperson confirmed some services would be closed including the library at Winchester School of Art.
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