Unite members working for the National Education Union (NEU), the UK’s largest union for teaching and lecturing staff, will strike tomorrow (Thursday 19 July) in protest at the ‘salami slicing’ of pay, and terms and conditions.

Unite said that the problems started when the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) joined with the National Union of Teachers to form the National Education Union in September 2017. 

The NEU management then embarked on a controversial consultation exercise that would see changes to contracts, downgrading of posts and cuts to pay and conditions.

Numerous attempts to slow down the management’s consultation exercise and requests for more detailed information by the staff unions at the NEU were ignored.

Unite ATL members will strike for 24 hours from 00.01 tomorrow (Thursday 19 July), after they voted by 88 per cent for strike action on the issue of staff restructuring.  

Unite ATL branch secretary Lisa Crivello said: “Our loyal and hardworking staff have devoted a substantial amount of their working lives fighting for the interests of the members they represent.

“Yet we fear the proposed new structures will mean a reduced service for members as staff are being downsized at a time when the membership is growing and the education sector is in crisis. 

“Trade union employers should lead by example and it is particularly ironic that we are working for an organisation that treats its own staff in a way it would never accept for its members.”

Unite national officer Siobhan Endean said: “Many of our members have come through the ranks and are highly loyal to the union and its members. They don’t take industrial action lightly and we call on the NEU management to engage in meaningful talks, and reach a fair and equitable agreement.

“We can’t tolerate this insidious salami slicing of pay, and terms and conditions. More industrial action is on the cards if the management digs in its heels.”

Up to 200 NEU staff, including Unite members, will strike in London and at NEU sites across the UK.

ENDS

Notes to editors:

For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office is on:  020 3371 2065. Email: shaun.noble@unitetheunion.org

  • Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.