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Strike ballot over salary cuts

Members of The University and College Union will be balloted for strike action in a row over pay.

The action comes after Sunderland College announced plans to cut the salaries of more than 150 lecturers by £10,000 and downgrade 70% of its teaching workforce to inferior pay grades.

The union has accused the college of trying to deliver teaching on the cheap and using the current funding difficulties in further education as an excuse to cut staff pay.

The ballot will close on Friday 18 May.

Nobody is blind to the funding challenges facing further education at the moment but there is no excuse for cutting pay in this way. The college’s actions are completely disproportionate and seem little more than an attempt to deliver teaching on the cheap.

– Iain Owens, UCU regional official

This is an extremely challenging time for Colleges across England as funding is cut, forcing savings to be made. We understand the union has a job to do on behalf of its members and we have a job to do on behalf of both our staff and our students – by securing the long term future and viability of the College.

We have an amount of money to save and are looking at various ways of making

those savings and have started from a ‘worst case scenario

– Nigel Harrett, vice principal curriculum and student support