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From The Socialist newspaper, 24 February 2010

Leeds university: Support lecturers striking to save jobs

Lecturers at Leeds University will be taking strike action this week to defend jobs and services against the proposed £35 million cuts that will lead to an estimated 700 job losses. The situation with biological sciences is particularly severe, due to a funding shortfall caused by the withdrawal of NHS support, with potentially 60 jobs under threat.

Sean Clothier

The lecturers' union, UCU, see this as a litmus test for what is to come as every department is told to balance its books. The proposed cuts at Leeds are by no means an aberration, with other UCU branches and students from universities like Sussex and Westminster having to take action against cutbacks in funding.

Leeds University is not in a bad financial situation. The university made surpluses of £11 million and £18 million in the last two years but insists that this money cannot be used to plug the gap in some departments. The university has a £60 million-plus capital programme, and it pays seven of its senior managers more than the prime minister. "The cupboard" is not "bare".

The recession has presented the management with an excuse to cut back and increase the profitability of Leeds university. The only way we can stop this is to build a mass campaign of education workers and students.

The Leeds University Union which up to now has condemned the strikes needs to be transformed into an organisation that fights for students and defends education.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 24 February 2010:

NHS: Not safe in their hands!

Private 'vultures' to run NHS hospital

How to stop cuts and defend public services

Demo opposes £29m Notts county cuts


Youth fight for jobs

Young people deserve a future: Join the Manchester march for jobs on 13 March

Youth Fight for Jobs Demonstrations


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Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition General Election launch rally


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British Airways cabin crew v management: Round two

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Workplace news and analysis

South Wales: Demo against council cuts

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Related links:

University:

trianglePay full fees for virtual courses? - No way!

trianglePlymouth students discuss rent strike

triangleSouthampton: University workers win full pay for casual staff

triangleNottingham uni occupation ends

triangleTory student plot defeated at Cardiff uni

Leeds:

triangle130 Years of May Day in Britain: Fight for workers' rights more relevant than ever

triangleSocialism the Podcast: What do our listeners think?

triangleLeeds Socialist Party: After Starmer's victory - how to continue the struggle for socialism

triangleLeeds Socialist Party: Trotskyism and the Second World War

Lecturers:

triangleLincoln students back UCU ballot

triangleCollege lecturers strike for a pay rise

triangleCollege lecturers in Wales strike against low pay and workload

Jobs:

triangleThe 'Lucas Plan'

triangleFight P&O's billionaire bosses' jobs cut plan

Students:

triangleCoronavirus: Students' charter

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