Staff at university in Edinburgh to strike amid cost-of-living crisis

Union members at Edinburgh Napier University will strike this week over pay.

By Diane King
Monday, 4th April 2022, 8:48 am

Professional services staff at the university are taking a further five days of industrial action starting from today. Staff had previously voted to strike over a pay offer of 1.5 per cent.

Unison Scotland said the university’s library, IT, school support, catering, security and other professional services functions would be seriously disrupted, with the union flagging the prospect of further disruption.

Lorcan Mullen, Unison regional organiser, said: “With inflation reaching 30-year highs and workers struggling desperately to pay the bills, university bosses have imposed year after year of real-terms pay cuts in UK-wide negotiations.

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The logo for Edinburgh Napier University

“Low and falling pay for working-class staff on university campuses is an employer choice, not a necessity. Principals and vice-chancellors holding pay down for library workers and security officers see fit to pay themselves hundreds of thousands of pounds per year, well beyond the salaries of Boris Johnson or Nicola Sturgeon.”

“Unison members at Napier are again taking a brave stand against this clear injustice, against the cold intransigence of university bosses and for pay justice.

"We await a serious local response from this employer, and call on supportive Edinburgh trade unionists and citizens to visit picket lines this week to show support and solidarity.”

A spokesperson for Edinburgh Napier University said: “The university fully respects the right of colleagues to take industrial action.

"However, we believe a fair and affordable pay award outcome was achieved in the 2021/22 national negotiations, so the further strike action by Unison is disappointing, particularly due to the potential impact on our students.”