University staff set to strike… Again

The University is facing the prospect of renewed strike action by lecturers and support staff on 3rd December following on from a strike on 31st October.

The dispute, involving the UCU, Unite and Unison unions, is due to a 1% pay increase proposed by the Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA), the union claims that this is tantamount to a pay cut and that lecturers had in effect suffered a 13% fall in their pay in real terms.

October’s action was the first time that the UCU, Unite and Unison unions had called for coordinated national industrial action across UK universities. The effect of the action was disputed with the Unions claiming that the UK universities had become ‘ghostowns’, while the UCEA claimed that the effect was minimal.

University registrar David Duncan told Vision that 5% of York staff participated in the previous strike. He admitted that he was unable to forecast the exact level of disruption for the December strike but that the second day of action attracts less support than the first.

“Our position hasn’t changed” he said, “We would like both sides to return to the negotiating table and try to reach an agreement. We will try to do our best to mitigate the effects of the action on students.”