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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 May 2006

Student union leaders hide truth about lecturers' action

LECTURERS IN the NATFHE and AUT unions are engaged in a marking boycott at universities across the country. They are struggling for the wage increase that university vice-chancellors said was the main reason for charging students top-up fees.

Iain Dalton, Huddersfield Socialist Students

Instead lecturers have been offered a pitiful 3% increase whilst the already over-inflated vice-chancellors' salaries have increased by 21%.

The NUS nationally supports the lecturers' action, so why are many student unions not doing so? Some are even aiding strikebreaking action by the university vice-chancellors.

This is happening at Huddersfield University, where the president and executive officers have taken a unilateral stance against the strikes. On their website it seems as if the pay dispute is not happening and the lecturers are just taking action to upset students,.

There has been no consultation between the Student Union and the local unions.

The current executive is merely interested in securing good jobs with business and with the university. The previous president now works in university management. None of them care about the real issues.

One of the arguments they use is that the marking boycott is damaging students' education. But if the lecturers' unions had students' full support it would make the vice-chancellor's position untenable.

NATFHE and AUT have supported students in the struggles against fees. They deserve students' solidarity in this struggle. Low-paid lecturers are less likely to want to carry on with the ever-increasing workload and may look for jobs in other sectors. That is surely not in students' interests.

The lecturers have tried at all times to consult the students at Huddersfield University, unlike the students' union who failed to inform students about the strikes in March. It seems they are doing the vice-chancellor's bidding against both lecturers and students.

Socialist Students in Huddersfield is proud of our role of supporting the lecturers and exposing the student union leadership for their distortion of the truth.

We are campaigning for a fully funded higher education system, democratically run without the parasitic university vice-chancellors. Lecturers should get the wages they deserve.

Students have the right to a free and fully funded education, where higher education is not just a commodity to be bought.

l The university employers' latest offer is 3.5% a year for three years, far short of the claim for 23% over three years. NATFHE are considering calling a joint national demonstration and further industrial action.

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In The Socialist 11 May 2006:


Socialist Party election analysis

Victory for NHS campaign

Huddersfield: voters choose a socialist and a fighter!

Third socialist councillor elected in Coventry

Increased votes for socialism in Lewisham

Stoke - BNP wins close-run election

Excellent results for the Socialist Party

Local elections: A death blow for Blair?

Dangers in Respect's development


Socialist Party NHS campaign

Stop the threats to the NHS


International socialist news and analysis

Female factory workers in Russia start hunger strike

Venezuela: Fight for socialism

Iraq - the nightmare continues

Germany: 'Unity' at the expense of the working class

Morales takes on 'Big Oil'


Socialist Party workplace news

Postal union rejects pay offer

Student union leaders hide truth about lecturers' action


 

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