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From The Socialist newspaper, 14 April 2010

Newcastle University - support staff face attacks on jobs and pay

Support staff at Newcastle University face job losses and pay cuts. They are mainly in areas organised by Unison, which has seen a large rise in membership, even without a major recruitment drive by the branch. Many support staff are on less than 16,000, and were recently offered a pathetic 0.25% pay deal. Shockingly, this is not even a pay rise, but merely a one-off payment!

There have also been attempts by management to remove premium payments for working weekends, nights, etc. Security staff are angry that their shift payments have been removed and changed.

At the moment there is a jobs freeze, and many Unison members have been scared into accepting pay cuts by the fear of job losses.

Newcastle Student Union is set to close on 1 November for 9-12 months. All bar and entertainment staff are to be made redundant. Finance workers, porters, and cleaners are at risk. Any staff that do stay on are faced with worse contracts and lower conditions.

Newcastle University Unison branch has decided to support the Newcastle Free Education Network (NFEN), a campaign to unite staff, students, and lecturers opposed to tuition fees, course cuts, and job losses. We are sending university management a clear message that students are opposed to attacks on support staff.

Students also have the backing of workers and the trade union movement in their campaign against tuition fees, course cuts, and job losses.

Ian Pattison, Socialist Students

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