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South Downs College strikes off as dispute resolved

4 July 2016

Strike action planned at South Downs College has been cancelled after an agreement was reached between the college and members of the UCU.

Staff were due to walk out today and tomorrow (Tuesday) following on from two days' action last week. However, an improved deal was put to union members, including assurances over salary protection, holiday entitlement and strike pay deductions, which they overwhelmingly voted to accept.

Nine in 10 members (91%) voted to accept the new deal, which had been brokered between the union and the college by the conciliation service ACAS.

The original strike ballot opened at the start of June after the college threaten to dismiss staff who refused to sign up to new contracts, which the union said would see pay fall and a reduction in holiday entitlement. Four-fifths of members who voted (79.6%), backed strike action in the ballot that closed on 13 June.

After UCU members backed strike action, the college put an improved package to members with guarantees over salary protection. However, they rejected the deal and took two days' strike action last week and had intended to walk out today and tomorrow as well.

UCU regional official, Moray McAulay, said: 'UCU members have overwhelmingly voted to accept the new deal put forward by the college. Strike action planned for this week is off and the dispute is resolved.

'Strike action is never taken lightly and we hope to work with the college in the future to resolve any difficulties before they get to this stage.'

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