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Uni staff strike in Dumfries

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By Fiona Reid
Dumfries and West
Uni staff strike in Dumfries

STAFF at the University of Glasgow’s Dumfries campus are holding ten days of strike action over cuts to pensions, pay cuts, casualised employment, equality pay gaps and unsafe workloads.

They join colleagues in 68 universities across the UK who are taking action up to February 22, then again from February 28 to March 2.

And there will be a rally for supporters at at 11 am this morning.

The action has been sparked by proposed changes to the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS), which could cut members’ retirement income by 35 per cent.

UCU union bosses say pay for university staff has been cut by 20 per cent in real terms since 2009 and that staff have been offered a one per cent pay rise this year after zero last year.

Furthermore, they claim that every week, the average worker performs two days unpaid work, while half of University of Glasgow staff are on casual contracts, with no job security beyond the next few months.

The union is asking for employers to agree to a compromise proposal to protect retirement incomes; and for them to improve their pay offer and commit to meaningful agreements and action on casualisation, workload, and equality pay gaps.

Local UCU representative David Clelland said: “The University of Glasgow, along with the other employers, are again forcing staff into industrial action to defend their pensions, and basic pay and conditions. They face a poorer retirement and falling real wages now as the cost of living rises.

“Although this will cause disruption, students in Dumfries and in Glasgow have shown their support.”

Meanwhile, a series of teach-outs are taking place at the Douglas Arms, open to all students, while the picket lines are on.

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