Portsmouth university lecturers to strike over proposed job losses

STAFF at the University of Portsmouth will be protesting next week, in the wake of plans to cut 65 jobs.

By David George
Friday, 31st May 2019, 5:06 pm
Updated Friday, 31st May 2019, 5:57 pm
The University of Portsmouth. Picture: Duncan Shepherd
The University of Portsmouth. Picture: Duncan Shepherd

The university recently announced plans to cut up to 65 jobs from the Faculty of Science, citing an imbalance in the ratio of staff to students.

Now, as the university’s executive board (UEB) meets to discuss the job cuts at the St Andrew’s Court building at 8am on Monday, lecturers will be outside protesting the proposed redundancies.

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Members of the University and College Union (UCU) say the students would suffer the consequences.

Regional official Moray McAuley said: ‘This decision to cut experienced staff will ultimately hit students the hardest.

‘The link between teaching and research has always been one of the university’s strengths and is central to its gold TEF status.

‘The university’s refusal to allow voluntary redundancies or rule out compulsory redundancies is also totally unacceptable.

‘Staff are understandably angry, so we urge the university to address their concerns and swiftly commit to a voluntary scheme or further action could be on the cards.’

The union says it is also calling on members who attend graduation ceremonies on a voluntary basis not to do so, adding that further action could be on the cards if the university does not reconsider its plans.

Speaking to The News when the redundancies were first announced, a spokeswoman for the university said: ‘The university faces a very competitive market with students more informed as they choose areas of study that match their career aspirations.’