College strikes halted after talks breakthrough

Fife College Lecturers on strike outside the St Brycedale campus on 17/05/17
Fife College Lecturers on strike outside the St Brycedale campus on 17/05/17
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The EIS has called off strike action at Scotland’s colleges after a breakthrough in its pay dispute.

The threat of further industrial action, which has hit Fife College and others, was lifted after the union said agreement was now in place to honour the deal to pay lecturers the same for teaching the same courses.

Negotiations with Colleges Scotland, the body which represents further education college principals, were held today after the latest round of strikes saw classes cancelled and students impacted.

The EIS said that while some details have yet to be finalised, sufficient progress had been made to allow agreement in principle to be reached.

Larry Flanagan,general secretary, said, “Following a further round of talks today we have reached a position where Colleges Scotland have agreed to honour the deal.

‘‘This is a significant victory for EIS-FELA members and it means that the employers will move immediately to implement phase one of the March 2016 pay agreement.

“As a result, all future planned strike action is suspended.’’

The union leader paid tribute to lecturers for their support throughout the campaign.

He added: “EIS-FELA members are thanked for their magnificent support and solidarity throughout this campaign – which has been focussed since the start on making management honour the deal.

‘‘The members’ action has secured this win which will see equal pay delivered across the sector and create equitable common Terms & Conditions for the sector moving forward.

‘‘This success by lecturers will also inspire other public sector workers fighting for fair pay.”