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Created: 02 May 2017 | Last Updated: 02 May 2017 | Printer Friendly Version Printer Friendly Version | Make Text Smaller Make Text Larger |

College Lecturers to Strike Tomorrow and Call for Scottish Government to Act

Tuesday 2 May 2017

The EIS has confirmed that FE college lecturers will strike tomorrow (Wednesday) in the second day of action in an ongoing dispute.

After the EIS offered two meetings last week to attempt to reach a resolution, the union was pleased that the management side finally agreed to meet today (Tuesday) for further talks.

While the EIS entered into today’s talks in good faith in the hope of a resolution, the strike action will go ahead tomorrow as no agreement was reached in today’s discussions.

Thousands of Further Education Lecturers in colleges across Scotland went on strike on Thursday last week over the refusal of College Management to honour a deal on pay and conditions that was reached more than a year ago.

The agreement promised equal pay for lecturers in all colleges and national terms and conditions, following years of pay inequity for lecturers doing the same jobs in different colleges.

EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said, "We welcome the fact that Colleges Scotland did, belatedly, agree to further talks today, following repeated requests from the EIS.

"While the EIS went into today’s talks in good faith and eager to find a way to resolve this dispute, the lack of any significant movement from management meant that no agreement was reached in these discussions. The reality is that it is likely that the intervention of the Scottish Government will be necessary to compel college management to meet their obligations to lecturers and students.

"Lecturers do not want to strike, but have been forced into this action by the refusal of management to honour the NJNC agreement that was reached more than a year ago. All that lecturers are asking for is for that deal to be honoured.”

Mr Flanagan added, "The spin from Colleges Scotland, purchased at great expense from an external consultancy, has completely unravelled over the past week.

"They repeatedly claimed that the agreement   was unaffordable. This was untrue, as Margaret Cook of Colleges Scotland admitted in a BBC television interview last week when she said, ‘We have the money to pay the pay award – that is not an issue.’ This was a welcome, though long overdue, admission from Colleges Scotland that they are choosing to withhold the pay element of a deal agreed over a year ago.

"It is not that the deal is unaffordable, it is a matter of Colleges electing to renege on what they agreed. It is time for Colleges Scotland to stop the spin and honour the deal that they signed – and it is time for the Scottish Government to ensure that colleges deliver this commitment.”