University and College Union to ballot members on pay rise strike

College workers are voting on whether to strike in a row over pay.

The University and College Union (UCU) has started balloting members in further education colleges in England on possible action in pursuit of a pay claim for a 6% increase or £1,500, whichever is the greater.

If the ballot supports industrial action, workers will strike on 24 April. The National Union of Teachers is also balloting for strike action on the same day.

The UCU claims college lecturers don’t receive the higher pay levels enjoyed by school teachers, and that they work excessive hours.

Barry Lovejoy, head of further education at UCU, said: “There is continuing frustration among lecturers about the rewards they receive for the professional job they do.

“We have seen some progress in narrowing the pay gap with school teachers, but this is being eroded by less-than-inflation pay awards. Meanwhile, 47% of colleges have still not implemented the new pay deal.”

The Association of Colleges, which represents employers, is not due to meet unions to discuss the pay claim until May.

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