Stirling MP Urges Dialogue Amidst University Industrial Action


Categories: Constituency, Education, University of Stirling

Student Experience Remains Vital

Stirling MP Alyn Smith has urged university management, as well as striking staff members, to return to the negotiating table as industrial action begins over working conditions, pay and pensions.

A 5-day walkout has begun at 11 Scottish universities, with institutions across the UK braced for further strike action in the coming days and weeks.

The University and Colleges Union estimate wages have fallen in real terms since 2009, and remain unhappy at proposed pension reforms which may see up to a 35% drop in the average member’s income during retirement.

Universities UK, which acts as an advocacy organisation for universities in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, argue current arrangements are financially unsustainable.

The Further and Higher education sectors have faced significant disruption and pressures from Brexit, the Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing economic turmoil.

Alyn Smith MP said:

‘I of course support fair conditions for workers, including those who help educate the next generation of citizens. I also appreciate the difficult position universities across the UK find themselves in regarding sustainable finances, particularly in light of Brexit, the pandemic and ongoing economic uncertainty. I urge UCU and UUK to get back around the negotiating table to ensure their shared interest – the quality education of our students – remains the key focus. I remain willing to assist where possible to help facilitate a resolution.’