Wednesday, March 08, 2006


We were on strike yesterday, and I picketed for two hours. It was very very cold and wet. Hmm, why can't we go on strike in warmer weather?

Three nice things happened while we were picketing: the head of security brought us fluorescent coats for the people who were standing in the middle of the road and flagging down traffic. Not only did these amke us more visible, but also they were really nice and warm. The second thing was that a bus-driver stopped and let me get on to leaflet the entire bus. It was so nice and warm on that bus, I could have stayed there all day. The third thing was that a nice chap from Bath Spa brought us chocolate (Green & Blacks, my favourite) which was splendid.

The reason we were on strike (and are now doing action short of a strike) is that when the vice-chancellors were trying to persuade the government to remove the cap on top-up fees, they said they would spend a third of the proceeds on salaries - and it was on that condition that the government removed the cap. Now the UCEA (the VCs' negotiating body) is denying all knowledge of that promise! Certainly many MPs were under the impression that the extra money from top-up fees was going to be spent on salaries.

According to the Guardian columnist John Sutherland, however, no-one even noticed that we were on strike. It's depressing.


The Silver Eel said...

Best of luck with this - and I hope Sutherland proves to be wrong.

Joe said...

I suppose like most industrial action it depends on coverage and on who it affects - if it doesn't affect most people in the country it won't get a lot of coverage, sad but true. Best with it anyway

Yvonne said...

Thanks! If we don't get the money, I think academics will be leaving in droves.