Wednesday, 28 January 2009

PA: 'Unions fight university job cuts'

From the Press Association (PA):

Union leaders pledged to fight plans to axe 330 jobs at a university, including cleaners and catering workers, because of funding cuts.

Unison, the National Union of Students and the University and College Union hit out at the cuts planned by London Metropolitan University, warning they could undermine the Government's aim of tackling poverty and build for renewed economic prosperity.

Dave Prentis, general secretary of Unison, said: "It cannot be right that more than 330 staff at London Met are being forced to pay the price for the complete incompetence of the universities senior management team.

"These job losses are difficult enough to comprehend, but Unison is very concerned that two thirds of these will be made up of support staff posts."

The three unions issued a joint statement which read: "We note with great concern that London Metropolitan University is proposing a programme of redundancies which could result in at least 330 job losses, following an £18 million funding cut imposed by the Higher Education Funding Council for England for inaccurate returns on student completion rates.

"Staff at all levels have delivered highly successful in-house services, academic programmes, student support and research outcomes.

"We consider that the cuts proposed punish staff as well as constituting a grave threat to the viability of the university."

The unions called for emergency funding to avert the job cuts.

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