SUSU Supports Upcoming Lecturer Strike


In a vote at Union Council this evening, it was decided that SUSU will support the upcoming lecturer’s strike on the 31st of October.

Union President David Gilani proposed that SUSU would give their support to the lecturers at the university who are set to go on strike over pay cuts. The motion was passed with 24 votes for and 22 against, with two councillors abstaining. The case for not supporting the strike was led by VP Education David Mendoza-Wolfson.

Unions planning the strike claim that university staff have suffered a 13% pay cut since October 2008. The strike will include members of three different unions: Unite, Unison and the University and College Union (UCU).

In supporting the strike, SUSU will not necessarily undertake any action, but it means that as a Union we do not condemn the actions of the strikers.


Editor and MA English student. Follow on Twitter @SamEverard1

Discussion5 Comments

  1. avatar

    Good news. If lecturers are being screwed over, they’re hardly going to work at their best – and the best are going to get fed up and leave. The lecturers’ interests are own.

  2. avatar

    Some facts:

    Of the entire staff population across the HE sector only 5% voted for strike action – likelihood that strike action will affect little to no activity at Southampton

    Since 2008 staff have received an annual cost of living increase plus points of at least 2% on their incremental pay scales.

    Staff in Universities benefit from the MOST generous pension provision across the country and have received pay awards above those in the public sector for 5 consecutive years. Lecturers have done pretty well given the current financial circumstances.

    Good to see students voting in favour of supporting activity that will harm their fellow students education.

    • avatar
      Tail wagging the dog

      Southampton UCU say:

      “Our pay has been cut 13% in real terms. A grade 5 lecturer is paying £100 more per month into their pension. And the university shed over 200 support staff last year.

      But the University also made a £15m surplus in the last financial year. It can afford to pay more, and employ more staff.”

      Obviously there are more union members than those who voted and the bulk of union members won’t cross a picket line. Given that turnout in the UCU ballot was ~35% of whom something like 60% voted for the strike your 5% figure doesn’t really tell the full story of how affected students will be. Lies, damn lies, etc.

      Sam I’m sure you won’t want to say here but I’d be interested to know which way you voted and why. Perhaps an opinion piece?

      • avatar

        The 5% is a number relating to the TOTAL staff population. So for the benefit of the tail.

        378,250 people work in the Higher Education sector
        of these 29,538 (7.8%) voted from the three unions
        of those who voted 17,800 voted in favour of strike action, which equals 4.7%.

        So one in 20 people across the University actively endorse this action. Most I would imagine recognise that in comparison to colleagues in public sector organisations they have done exceptionally well during the economic turmoil that has been visited upon us since 2008. Science Budget ring-fenced in the Budget, teaching funding remaining stable, THE most generous pension provision in the UK.

        I wonder if you put 20 students in a room if there would be more than 2 who would actively support this action, armed with the facts from both sides and a dollop of common sense.

        I just cannot fathom how the SU thinks they are representing the interests of their members when so many academic staff are ambivalent or just thanking the heavens they haven’t got it worse.

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