On Oct 31st trade unions UCU (university college lecturers union), UNITE and UNISON will strike over attacks to pay. The Marxist Student Federation, to which UCLU Marxists are affiliated, has proposed the following resolution (see below) to be raised in student unions. The UCLU Marxists voted to adopt the resolution, and later at the public meeting got an indicative vote from the room unanimously in favour. Over forty pounds has now been raised for the striking staff, and the UCLU Marxists plans to invite a UCU rep to speak to the society at their meeting next Wednesday (changed from the usual Thursday meeting so as not to cross the picket lines). The resolution will now be submitted to the student union council.
Resolution of the UCLU Marxists: Support the Strike - students and workers unite and fight
1. That since 2008, when £850 billion of public money was used to bail-out banks that continue to pay out billions in bonuses, the government has aimed to recoup that money by cutting back on public spending on health, transport, benefits and education.
2. That despite government claims that Britain is emerging from the crisis, the reality is that cuts and austerity for the vast majority of people are continuing unabated and will not subside for years to come.
3. That as a result of this, University staff have, since the beginning of the crisis of capitalism in 2008, suffered a real terms pay cut of 13%.
4. That staff are being offered no more than a 1% pay rise this year despite inflation remaining at 2.7% and some prices rising even faster than that.
5. That as a result of this, UCU, Unison and Unite unions have agreed joint strike action on 31st October 2013 that will include academic and non-academic members of university staff.
1. That the pay and conditions of university staff are being slashed as part of a wider attack on education in Britain that has seen cuts to courses, an increase in tuition fees and the introduction of free schools; and that the struggle by staff for decent pay therefore concerns students as much as the fight for free and decent education.
2. That this attack on education cannot be separated from similar attacks on the NHS, the unemployed, the disabled, the welfare state, the emergency services and other publicly funded institutions; and that the struggle against cuts to these services therefore concerns students as much as the fight for free and decent education.
3. That there is enough money in Britain, not only to avoid these attacks, but in fact to greatly increase public funding for education, healthcare and the welfare state.
4. That this money (amounting to £750bn) is currently privately owned and remains uninvested, not because it is not needed, but because it cannot be used to profit the handful of people who control it.
5. That this situation is the result of a capitalist economic system run for profit instead of need, and whose operation inevitably results in crises, inefficiency and the growth of inequality.
1. To publicly support all university staff taking strike action on 31st October 2013.
2. To publicly encourage all students not to cross picket lines.
3. To send delegates to the local Trades Council and to picket lines to offer practical support for the strike on the 31st October 2013 and for further action to fight against cuts to public services.
4. To call for the nationalisation under democratic control of the banks and big businesses as the only way to secure decent pay and conditions for university staff, decent and free education for all, and properly funded public services.