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Lambeth College to be hit by waves of strikes

26 November 2014 | last updated: 10 December 2015

UCU members at Lambeth College have today announced a wave of strikes that will culminate in all-out indefinite strike action from 19 January if a row over contracts is not resolved.

Staff will first walk out next Thursday (4 December) and then escalate the action each week in the run up to Christmas. If the dispute is not resolved by the end of the year, they will pick up where they left off in 2015 before walking out indefinitely from Monday 19 January.

The full timetable for strikes:

  • one day strike action on Thursday 4 December 2014
  • two days of strike action on Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 December 2014
  • three days of strike action on Monday 15, Tuesday 16 and Wednesday 17 December
  • two days of strike action on Wednesday 7 and Thursday 8 January 2015
  • three days of strike action on Tuesday 13, Wednesday 14 and Thursday 15 January 2015
  • continuous strike action from Monday 19 January 2015.

The row centres on new contracts introduced by the college without consulting the union. UCU has welcomed a commitment from the college that it will not impose the new contracts on staff employed before April 2014.

However, the union remains unhappy with the two-tier employment structure the contracts have produced and wants the new contract removed or a fresh one drawn up with its agreement.

UCU regional official, Una O'Brien, said: 'The situation at Lambeth College is now very clear and the management cannot be in any doubt at how angry staff are about the new contracts. A programme of strike action is set to begin next week and escalate through to indefinite action at the start of next year.

'We hope that strike action, which will certainly mean major disruption again at Lambeth, won't be necessary. The college needs to sit down with us to talk through changes to staff contracts and work towards finding a solution staff are happy with.'

More than four-fifths (83%) of UCU members who voted backed the call for action in the strike ballot on a high turnout of 58%. In June, UCU members went out on strike for five weeks - the longest strike in the union's history.

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