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HE and FE unions reject pay offer


The University & College Lecturers' Union today condemned as 'insulting and totally inadequate' a pay offer made by their university employers. All three HE teaching unions have rejected an offer of 2.5% (with an extra 0.3% average to move to a new common pay spine) made by the Universities and Colleges Employers' Association (UCEA) in response to the unions' (NATFHE, AUT and Educational Institute of Scotland) joint pay claim for 2002.

The unions had lodged a pay claim for a 15% pay increase for academic staff this year. They have also urged the government to respond positively to the university employers' and unions' bid for significant extra funding for higher education in the forthcoming comprehensive spending review.

NATFHE, AUT and EIS issued the following joint statement in response to the offer: "This pay offer is totally inadequate and completely unacceptable in settlement of the joint pay claim. The pay of the UK academic community and higher education staff is now amongst the worst within universities in the developed world.

"This insulting offer will anger the profession and worsen the staffing crisis in our universities. Employers have already recognised the link between poor pay and the difficulty attracting new staff into higher education. It will also damage government attempts to widen access. Without a significantly improved pay offer it will prove impossible for Ministers to attract enough new lecturers and academics to both expand student numbers and maintain standards.

"Our unions will now seek views from our members and are prepared to organise the necessary action to achieve a just and fair pay settlement."


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