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Staff strike at University of the West of England

9 February 2011 | last updated: 11 December 2015

Members of UCU at the University of the West of England (UWE) will be on strike on 10 February in protest at controversial restructure plans.

Staff will be on picket lines from 8.30am at the main entrance to UWE's Frenchay campus on Coldharbour Lane. There will also be pickets at the university's St Mathias campus on Oldbury Court Road, Glenside Campus on Blackberry Hill, and Bower Ashton campus on Kennel Lodge Road.
The action comes after the union accused UWE of trying to rush through controversial proposals which would force all university readers, professors and principal lecturers to reapply for their jobs. The university is looking to cut back on senior posts by 25% and lecturers and hourly-paid staff will also face a review over the next few weeks.
UCU said that although it wasn't against a restructure in principle, UWE's management had refused to allow enough time for the union to see if the process was fair and transparent.
The strike follows the result of a month long ballot. Two-thirds of staff (66%), who voted, supported strike action and nine in ten (89%) agreed to action short of a strike. The union said that although its members at UWE had given a clear mandate for strike action it still hoped the dispute could be resolved.
UCU regional official, Philippa Davey, said: 'Strike action is always a last resort but the actions of UWE's management has left us with little option. Its insistence on rushing through proposals that will affect the jobs of hundreds of staff has forced our hand. The university has refused to allow us the time needed to make sure the plans are fair.
'We still want a negotiated settlement but unless management is willing to shift its position staff are willing to take the appropriate steps to defend their jobs.'