Strikes: Students and staff march in solidarity

‘Hugh Brady, get out! We know what you’re all about!’


This morning, staff and students united on picket lines all over campus for the first of eight days of UCU industrial action.

They rallied outside the Victoria Rooms, hearing various speeches affirming the reasons for striking, with students strongly objecting to the “marketisation” of higher education.

The protestors then peacefully walked down Park Street to College Green, chanting and holding flares.

Students could be heard chanting, "Hugh Brady, get out! We know what you're all about!"

UCU estimates say 500-1000 people attended todays demonstrations.

Bristol Student-Staff Solidarity group (BSSSG) lead the support for the striking staff, marching around campus and joining pickets.

Ruth Day, a key member of BSSSG, said, “Student staff solidarity is so important at a time when we are both under attack.”

VC Hugh Brady and PVC Judith Squires also spoke to staff on picket-lines.

UCU Bristol Branch Chair James Thompson said, “It is so important senior colleagues hear the concerns of staff and engage seriously with those concerns.”

Hugh Brady spoke to staff on picket lines

Two candidates for the constituency of Bristol West were also spotted amongst the demonstrations.

Carla Denyer, Green candidate said: "I completely, 100 per cent support the strike.

"We just think that the direction that higher education has taken towards privatisation and a kind of "grow or die" business model for the universities is fundamentally unsustainable, and we would want to see higher education properly funded."

Green Party MP candidate, Carla Denyer, at the 10am rally

Labour candidate, Thangam Debbonaire said: "Far too many lecturers and university staff are on insecure contracts, temporary contracts.

"That's not good for education, it's not good for students, it's not good for research, it's not good for the university sector."

Thangam (central) with hat and tote bag

Strikes will continue until Wednesday 4th of December, with Action Short of a Strike ongoing until April 2020.

For more information on the strikes:

Bristol UCU

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