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Taking action in higher education

14 days of walkouts at 13 Scottish universities as part of biggest ever UK strikes

18 February 2020

Members of UCU at 13 Scottish universities will walk out for 14 days in the largest wave of strikes ever seen on UK campuses. Staff are walking out in two disputes, one over pensions, and another over pay and working conditions.

In the main, UCU members will be taking action on:

Week one - Thursday 20 & Friday 21 February
Week two - Monday 24, Tuesday 25 & Wednesday 26 February
Week three - Monday 2, Tuesday 3, Wednesday 4 & Thursday 5 March
Week four - Monday 9, Tuesday 10, Wednesday 11, Thursday 12 & Friday 13 March

However, staff at five universities are following slightly different strike timetables* due to fitting the action in around things like reading weeks. UCU members at all 13 institutions are taking 14 days action.

Striking staff will be on picket lines outside entrances to their respective universities and there will be a rally outside the Scottish Parliament at 1.00pm on Tuesday 25 February.

UCU Scotland official Mary Senior said: 'It is incredibly frustrating that UCU members are being forced to walk out again to secure fair pay, conditions and pensions. This unprecedented level of action shows just how angry staff are at their universities' refusal to negotiate properly with us.

'If universities want to avoid continued disruption then they need to get their representatives back to the negotiating table with serious options to resolve these disputes.'

This is the second wave of strike action in the disputes after UCU members took part in eight days of strike action before Christmas. Across the UK, 74 universities will be affected by the strikes, which is the largest number since a nationwide two-day strike in 2016, while the number of strike days is unprecedented.

Following the eight-days of action before Christmas, this latest round of 14 strike days means the total number of walkouts will be 22 by March; higher than the previous record of 14 days in 2018.


Universities affected by strike action from Thursday 20 February

Both disputes:

Heriot-Watt University

Open University in Scotland

University of Dundee

University of Stirling

University of Edinburgh

University of Glasgow

University of St Andrews

University of Strathclyde

University of Aberdeen

 

Pay and conditions dispute only:

Glasgow Caledonian University

Glasgow School of Art

Queen Margaret University

 

USS pensions dispute only:

Scottish Association for Marine Science

* Five branches will have slightly different dates due to timetabling: 

  • University of Edinburgh - Strike action will take place on 24, 25, 26 and 27 February 2020 and 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, and 13 March 2020.
  • University of Dundee  - Strike action will take place on 20, 21, 24, 25, 26, 27 and 28 February 2020 and 2, 3, 4, 5, 9, 10, and 11 March 2020
  • OU in Scotland  - Strike action will take place on 20, 21, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28 and 29 February 2020 and 2, 3, 4, 5, 9 and 10 March 2020.
  • University of Stirling - Strike action will take place on 24, 25, 26 February and 2, 3, 4, 5, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 16, and 17 March 2020
  • Scottish Association for Marine Science 2, 3, 4, 5, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 16, 17, 25, 26, and 27 March

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