Breaking News: Three day strike action announced for Sheffield Hallam and Uni of

58 universities across the country will be striking in December

Sheffield Hallam and Uni of will be hit with three days of strike action in December.

They join 58 other universities across the country striking from Wednesday 1 December to Friday 3 December.

Strike action is taking place due to on-going disputes concerning pensions, pay and working conditions.

Staff at Sheffield University will be striking over both pay and pensions and Hallam staff will solely be striking over pensions.

Earlier this month, UCU members backed strike action in two separate ballots, one over pension cuts and one over pay & working conditions.

In total, over three quarters (78.8 per cent) of Sheffield University’s UCU members voted to back the strike action and nearly two thirds (61.3 per cent) of Hallam UCU members voted in favour of striking.

UCU general secretary Jo Grady, said: “Strikes over three consecutive days are set to hit university campuses next month unless employers get round the table and take staff concerns over pension cuts, pay and working conditions seriously.

“UCU has repeatedly asked employers to meet with us to try to resolve these disputes. But while we set out pragmatic solutions that could halt widespread disruption to UK campuses, university bosses refuse to revoke unnecessary, swingeing pension cuts or even to negotiate on issues like casualisation and the unbearably high workloads that blight higher education.”

“A resolution to this dispute is simple. But if employers remain intent on slashing pensions and exploiting staff who have kept this sector afloat during a pandemic then campuses will face strike action before Christmas, which will escalate into spring with reballots and further industrial action.”

National Union of Students national president Larissa Kennedy, said: “Students have a rich history of standing shoulder to shoulder with university staff, who have seen their pensions, pay and conditions slashed in recent years. With vice chancellors’ average total pay packets rising to £269,000 per year, it’s clear employers can afford to resolve their dispute with UCU over staff pay, which has fallen by an average of 20% in real terms since 2009.

“Staff teaching conditions are student learning conditions, and we mustn’t forget many postgraduate students on casualised teaching contracts will be striking. The onus for minimising disruption for students lies with university bosses: they must come back to the table to address the clear issues in how higher education is currently run.”

More information on the December strike action, can be found on the UCU’s website.

Individual lecturers will be in touch regarding teaching timetables and how the strikes will personally affect students at each university.

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