Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/335/5640
NUS and AUT
United To Defend Education
No pay cuts
Kick the market out of education
I WILL be on strike in support of the union's stand against the university employers. This is not a dispute just about a pay rise.
Sue Atkins, Association of University Teachers (AUT) member, University of Southampton
When a grading review was introduced up and down the country we were assured that there would be no losers. I am angry that they are now attempting to bring in a new salary structure that will lead to the abandonment of national wage-bargaining, widespread downgrading of staff and substantial pay losses across the sector. This will mean that our pay will be decided on where we live, not what we do.
I am also concerned, as an "academic related" member of staff, which includes senior administrators, library and computing staff, that our link with academic staff will be severed. This will leave us in a very vulnerable and exposed position and the AUT will not be able to negotiate for us - and as a group we make up 25% of the AUT's membership.
It's therefore important that we support the strike action, and it's gratifying that the AUT has linked up with the National Union of Students to shut down universities next week and campaign jointly against the marketisation of higher education.
"This is about defending higher education as a whole. It's not just about top-up fees and pay and conditions. "These are all elements of New Labour's agenda for the marketisation of education."
Michael Wainwright, Socialist Students Brunel University
"The AUT and students are affected by the same cuts so it makes sense that we respond in a united struggle."
Pete O'Hare, Manchester University
"Students were already planning action against top-up fees, so this is a golden opportunity to link up with lecturers in the AUT and be more visible and powerful and show people that the campaign is still going on."
Connor, Durham University
In The Socialist 21 February 2004:
Workplace news and analysis
Socialist Party feature