Universities throughout the UK will face one other spherical of strikes subsequent month until employers comply with return to the negotiating desk, the College and Faculty Union has warned.
A marking boycott that has left tens of 1000’s of scholars with out their diploma end result this summer time will proceed, the union mentioned, whereas preparations will get beneath means for a brand new strike poll to resume the union’s mandate.
If profitable, the UCU’s long-running and more and more acrimonious dispute over pay and situations will proceed to have an effect on campuses effectively into 2024, endlessly to the stalemate after talks with employers broke down.
The UCU announcement on Monday night got here after a gathering of senior officers to determine subsequent steps within the dispute. Beforehand, greater schooling minister Robert Halfon wrote to either side, urging them to renew negotiations to deliver an finish to the boycott and additional industrial motion.
Saying the most recent motion, UCU’s basic secretary, Jo Grady, mentioned: “Our greater schooling committee immediately agreed to hit universities with a number of days of strike motion at first of the approaching educational yr if vice-chancellors refuse to return to negotiations.
“We is not going to be bullied into accepting gig financial system universities, nor will we settle for employers imposing punitive pay deductions. Whereas we’ve got agreed to requests for a joint evaluate of sector funds, employers have made no try and compromise on the important thing points.”
The union mentioned it might affirm the variety of days and dates of strike motion at a later date. The marking boycott, in the meantime, which has affected college students at 145 universities because it first started in April, will go on.
UCU members have refused to mark ultimate exams, dissertations and coursework as a part of their dispute, and lots of have suffered pay cuts in consequence.
Universities have issued provisional outcomes or certificates to permit college students to graduate on time, and affected college students have been advised their diploma class shall be issued when assessments are accomplished in a number of months.
Members of the union voted to reject a pay supply for 2023-24 price between 5% and eight%. “The UK greater schooling sector presents itself as a world chief, however it’s riddled with casualisation, insecurity and low pay – our members don’t have any alternative however to face up for themselves,” Grady mentioned.
“Due to this fact, the marking boycott will proceed, we are going to name extra strike motion in September and we are going to now start plans to reballot college employees so we will take additional motion within the coming educational yr.”
Raj Jethwa, chief govt of the Universities and Faculties Employers Affiliation (UCEA), mentioned it was extraordinarily disappointing. “UCU should be sincere with its members about the truth that there isn’t any chance of an additional pay uplift within the 2023-24 pay spherical and that these facets of the talks are full.
“Nevertheless, UCEA awaits a proper response from UCU and all of the unions to our proposal final week for an unbiased evaluate of sector funds, adopted by additional talks on the essential pay-related issues raised by the UCU and the unions.”