University and College Union (UCU) Scotland members at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) will begin the first of six days of strikes today, Tuesday. The strike is over £4 million cuts the university is making, including £3 million from the staffing budget meaning that up to 44 roles are being made redundant.
The ballot to take strike action had a very high turnout with 77% backing the strikes.
Jobs will be cut in the university’s executive office and include staff working across the university in teaching, research, management and administration, and in ensuring academic quality as well as essential services like student support.
Employees of UHI are losing their jobs in Inverness and across UHI campuses throughout the Highlands and Islands area.
The University and College Union (UCU) Scotland state that senior managers at the university had not been open to talks to prevent tomorrow’s strike going ahead and that the disruption and impact on students was the fault of management.
Local politicians across the Highlands and Islands urged UHI and to get round the negotiating table with the union. (UHI to be Hit by Strike Action)
Sorcha Kirker, UHI UCU branch officer, said:
‘This is the first time in the thirty-year history of the university that there has been strike action taken by the university’s employees. The very last thing we want to do is to go on strike, but the scale of these job losses, the lack of consultation and the rushed process has left us no choice.
“Even at this late stage, we call on the university’s principal to listen to her workforce, listen to students, and to local politicians and engage in talks to find a way forward that doesn’t involve this scale of cuts and job losses.’
Redundancy notices have already gone out to many members of staff.
Categories: Local News