I am a QUB student and this is why I support our lecturers in their strike action
I personally wouldn’t want to give up £10,000 per year for no good reason
Later this month, sixty-one universities across the UK could be facing almost three full weeks of strike action. Strike action is planned on the following days – 22, 23, 26, 27, 28 February 2018 and 5, 6, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 15 March 2018.
As students, this means we will miss valuable class time which we are paying top-dollar for and could possibly end up affecting our grades. However, I, as a student, fully support any industrial action our lecturers feel the need to take and here is why:
Our lecturers worked hard to get to where they are and they deserve everything they get. They started their career which promised they would be financially stable for the rest of their lives, but now those promises are being broken. If Universities UK(UUK) are allowed to cut pensions by such a substantial sum now, what is to stop them doing much more in the future when it is our generation working at the universities?
Also, I would like to know why our hardworking lecturers are being asked to take such a huge reduction in their pensions while just last September some of the highest paid people at these universities got pay raises of up to 20%. Surely you can survive on a £400,000 salary?
Hannah, a second year at Queen's University Belfast, said: "There is an underlying frustration felt by students due to the timing of the strike, because a lot of students have assignments and deadlines to meet so they're anxious about being neglected and it impacting their degree. However, Queen's as a university and a community need to stand up and show their support in this strike, the change in pensions is unacceptable and will put a lot of people in vulnerable positions. Years of work and contribution will be overlooked. It's scary, the idea of working your whole life and slowly creeping towards instability, at an age when you need it the most."
A UCU spokesman said: “Anything that focuses vice-chancellors’ minds – even at this late stage – is to be welcomed. Those vice-chancellors who, like us, want to avoid the disruption should be demonstrating to their students exactly what they are doing to try and resolve the dispute.
“We would encourage every student to get in touch with their vice-chancellor and ask exactly what they are doing to help bring the dispute to an end.”
If our lecturers do strike, we as students should be entitled to a refund for the time we miss because where is our money going for the three weeks wages aren't being paid?