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Eight days of strikes at three Welsh universities on from Monday

Members of the University and College Union at 60 UK universities will walk out from Monday (25 November) to Wednesday 4 December

·         Disputes are over pay and working conditions, and rising pension costs


Bangor University, Cardiff University and the University of Wales will be hit with eight days of strike action from Monday (25 November) after no agreement could be reached between university representatives and the University and College Union (UCU) over pensions, pay and working conditions.


Striking staff will be on picket lines from 8am in the following locations:


Earlier this week, UCU accused universities of playing games after their representatives refused to even discuss pay. The union said things were no better at talks yesterday (Wednesday) over changes to the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS), where their representatives failed to make a serious offer. 


UCU said it feared that universities had learnt nothing from last year’s dispute, when university campuses were brought to a standstill by unprecedented levels of strike action.


Last month, UCU members backed strike action in ballots over both pensions, and pay and working conditions. The results mean that UCU members at 60 UK universities* are walking out on Monday.


The disputes centre on changes to USS pensions and universities’ failure to make improvements on pay, equality, casualisation and workloads. At Cardiff University, 82% of staff who voted supported strike action over USS, and 77% backed strike action over pay and equality.


At Bangor University, 76% of staff polled backed strike action over USS, while 70% voted for strikes over pay and equality. Members at the University of Wales voted unanimously for strikes in the USS dispute, and 92% of voting staff backed strike action in the pay and equality dispute.


As well as eight strike days, union members will begin “action short of a strike” from Monday. This involves things like working strictly to contract, not covering for absent colleagues and refusing to reschedule lectures lost to strike action.


UCU Wales official, Margaret Phelan, said: ‘Strike action is a last resort, but universities’ refusal to deal with these key issues have left us with no alternative. It is staggering and insulting that universities have not done more to work with us to try and find a way to resolve these disputes.


‘We hope students will continue to put pressure on university vice-chancellors to get their representatives back round the negotiating table for serious talks with the union.’


Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner has called on both sides to get round the table for talks and the National Union of Students says students stand shoulder to shoulder with staff in the disputes.

* UK universities affected by strike action from Monday 25 November

Both disputes (43):

1.       Aston University


2.       Bangor University


3.       Cardiff University


4.       University of Durham


5.       Heriot-Watt University


6.       Loughborough University


7.       Newcastle University


8.       The Open University


9.       The University of Aberdeen


10.   The University of Bath


11.   The University of Dundee


12.   The University of Leeds


13.   The University of Manchester


14.   The University of Sheffield


15.   University of Nottingham


16.   The University of Stirling


17.   University College London


18.   The University of Birmingham


19.   The University of Bradford


20.   The University of Bristol


21.   The University of Cambridge


22.   The University of Edinburgh


23.   The University of Exeter


24.   The University of Essex


25.   The University of Glasgow


26.   The University of Lancaster


27.   The University of Leicester


28.   City University


29.   Goldsmiths College


30.   Queen Mary University of London


31.   Royal Holloway


32.   The University of Reading


33.   The University of Southampton


34.   The University of St Andrews


35.   Courtauld Institute of Art


36.   The University of Strathclyde


37.   The University of Wales


38.   The University of Warwick


39.   The University of York


40.   The University of Liverpool


41.   The University of Sussex


42.   The University of Ulster


43.   Queen’s University Belfast




Pay and conditions dispute only (14):

1.       Bishop Grosseteste University


2.       Bournemouth University


3.       Edge Hill University


4.       Glasgow Caledonian University


5.       Glasgow School of Art


6.       Liverpool Hope University


7.       Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts


8.       Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh


9.       St Mary’s University College, Belfast


10.   Roehampton University


11.   The University of Oxford


12.   Sheffield Hallam University


13.   The University of Brighton


14.   The University of Kent



USS pensions dispute only (3):

1.       Scottish Association of Marine Science

2.       The University of East Anglia

3.       Institute for Development Studies