Protests are being held across Main Campus and Cathays Park as day one of lecturer strikes begin
Today is the first of fourteen days of proposed strike action
Across campus today, strikes and protests are taking place with staff and students coming together to show their support for the strikes.
Strikes are taking place due to a proposed change to salaries which will see the typical lecturer losing nearly £10,000 per year in retirement. The proposed strikes will take place over the next four weeks with 14 days of strikes planned.
In an open letter to Cardiff students, the Vice Chancellor Colion Riordan explains the University's position on the strikes and the difficulties faced by both staff and the University as a whole.
" We are committed to paying 18 per cent of salaries as we do currently under USS, but we cannot afford to contribute to the additional 11 per cent of salaries that the current scheme (defined benefits) would require in future. This would be unsustainable in the long term which is why the University is in favour of a move to a different scheme (defined contribution) for staff.
We need to find a solution that is affordable both for employers and for members. We do not wish to see members having to take a cut of almost four per cent in their take home pay (because their pension contributions would rise), and we cannot countenance putting the University into an unsustainable financial position that could result in student dissatisfaction and reduced overall performance. Universities would have to accept a rise in salary costs of over seven per cent, in our case amounting to more than £10m"
Molly, a second year Ancient History and History student at the protests said " the atmosphere was buzzing, there was a real sense of solidarity amongst lecturers, students and other outside supporters. It is vital that we support of lecturers because the security of their future is just as important as ours".
Louise, a second year English Language student who is also at the strikes said " there is a really good atmosphere and a lot of support, even cars going past and beeping. I'm supporting my lecturers as I feel they work so hard and dedicate their profession to helping us however they are not being given the security that they should have with their job. For future generations, it is also impotant to make sure there is security for the next generation of lecturers and students."
Updates to follow as the strikes continue.