By Fraser McLuggage.
University lecturers across Scotland have voted to go on strike five times over the course of a month in an attempt to try and force a pay rise.
The vote to go on strike had to surpass the 50% threshold in order for strikes to go ahead. UWS lecturers voted with a majority 52% in favour of the strike and after three attempts, it is scheduled to take place on February 20 and 25 will continue into March 2, 11 and 12.
A lecturer and member of the Educational Institute of Scotland said : “It’s high time it’s needed, but I know many of the academics will worry about the disturbance that it causes our students. I don’t like to put them in a position, where they will be disadvantaged.
“You are really torn in terms of your professionalism, where your commitment and dedication lies with your students but at the same time you want the university to value what we bring to the university. We need to be valued by the wider organisation.”
The lecturer then hit out at the Scottish Government when they said: “I would like to see value associated to the work that we do. For a very long time we haven’t seen a pay increase and I think this is their chance, with wider teachers getting a considerable pay rise, put your money where your mouth is.”
Robyn Boyd is a student at UWS and can understand why the lecturers feel the need to go on strike but admits that the timing isn’t the best. She said: “My lecturers do a lot for me and with them going on strike just now, that is going to impact classes because it’s assessment time and that’s when you need them the most. It would be really rubbish to not have contact time with them so I think something needs to be done about it to avoid affecting the students.
From a students perspective I obviously don’t want them to go on strike, but it is the best way to get noticed because obviously it is going to affect us so then the people in charge will have to do something about it. I don’t want them to do it but I can understand why.”