University lecturers accept new pay deal

University lecturers’ have accepted a new pay offer, bringing an end to a bitter dispute that involved boycotting of exam and coursework marking.

The University and College Union (UCU) agreed to a rise of 10.37% over 22 months, plus at least 2.5% in the next year, in fresh negotiations with employers. The deal involves a review of the money available for pay, which the union says might mean a bigger rise in 2008.

The union had been demanding a pay rise of more than 20% over three years.

The industrial action was suspended from midnight on Tuesday and union members will be balloted on the deal. Some universities have warned they may have to start laying off staff to cover pay rises for lecturers.

UCU joint general secretaries, Sally Hunt and Paul Mackney, said: “No settlement ever provides everything that you want for members, but we believe that this is the best that can be achieved within the current national negotiating environment.”

The Universities and Colleges Employers’ Association (UCEA), said: “We are particularly pleased that the immediate suspension of industrial action will stop disruption for students and allow completion of examination processes.”

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