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Strike date announced at Middlesex University

28 September 2011

Staff at Middlesex University will be on strike on Tuesday 4 October unless urgent talks can resolve an increasingly bitter dispute over job cuts and changes to staff terms and conditions.

Members of UCU today called on vice-chancellor, Professor Michael Driscoll, to meet for urgent talks to avoid disruptive strike action. UCU members will be joined on the picket lines by their colleagues in UNISON, who have also voted for strike action on Tuesday.
 
Staff are furious that the university wants to introduce cost-cutting measures that will result in up to 300 redundancies, with half of the savings to be found by cuts to academic staff. UCU said the job losses would have a devastating effect on the quality of academic provision and the student experience.
 
The university is refusing to rule out increased workloads for staff who survive the jobs cull, which the union believes is in breach of nationally-agreed conditions of service. Next year, Middlesex University will charge some of the highest tuition fees in the UK (£8,602, after financial support is taken into account).
 
UCU branch chair at Middlesex University, Arthur Husk, said: 'It is a shame that things have had to come to this but the university's cost-cutting measures will have a devastating impact on academic provision, the student experience and staff morale. We still want to avoid any disruption, but the vice-chancellor needs to get round the table with us and genuinely look at ways to resolve the dispute.'
 
UCU general Secretary, Sally Hunt, said: 'UCU members at Middlesex want a negotiated settlement, but unless the university is willing to shift its position staff will take the appropriate steps to defend their jobs. I urge the vice-chancellor to get around the table and work positively with us for a resolution.'

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