FRi email

The Friday email: 2 March 2018

UCU has never been prouder of our members, our organisation, our supporters and of course our amazing students. This week has truly shown the best of us and our values of solidarity, commitment to education and a determination to fight for a decent life for people at work and in retirement.

Further education college staff strike for a better deal

UCU members in 14 colleges across the UK took strike action on Wednesday and Thursday over pay and working conditions. Despite the freezing cold the mood on picket lines was determined and confident and members were heartened by solidarity from university colleagues striking over pensions and from across UCU and the wider movement. In London, FE strikers joined the massive March for Education which ended with a packed rally at Westminster and heard rousing speeches of support from Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell, Shadow Education Secretary Angel Rayner, Sally Hunt, NUS president Shakira Martin and many other MPs, striking members and supporters. More on the campaign for better pay and better jobs in FE here

USS: spectacular strike action brings employers back to ACAS talks

As our unprecedented strike action continues across USS institutions, the employers' representatives Universities UK (UUK) have finally agreed to come back to talks via the conciliation service Acas which will begin on Monday 5 March. More details about the talks and our set of proposals aimed at resolving the dispute here

Now we need to keep the pressure on the employers. Our strike action is solid, our picket lines are strong, the entire movement is behind us and has been inspired by what has already achieved. Many university employers are continuing to move away from UUK's hardline approach with University of Cambridge vice-chancellor now supporting exploring our proposals and University of Sheffield announcing a complete u-turn on their threat of 100% pay deductions for action short of striking. 

Best wishes

Justine Stephens
UCU head of campaigns

Last updated: 2 March 2018