The University College Union (UCU) and Unison, the two unions that are recognised by Sussex Coast College, are taking joint action due to the pay freeze, with a recent strike on the 24 Feb 2016. The demand is £1 per hour for all at a national level. Sussex Coast College, the Local College for Hastings and Rye, has in the last 6 years given a 1% standard of living pay rise. In real term almost a 20% cut. This means staff are now working 5 days on 4 days money while their workload increases.
In a recent Freedom of Information request some shocking statistics came to light. The average lecturer pay at Sussex Coast College is £26,900, 50% of lecturing staff are below £23k, 33% of curriculum staff under £19k, Rated 159 out of 181 of FE colleges in the UK for pay, The top 9 earners earnt (2014/15) the same as the bottom 40, The difference between the top 9 peoples average salary and the lecturers average is £40k
By comparing the average salary which Sussex Coast College lecturers are being paid against other institutions, it is on average £5k less then other Institutions on the South Coast.
This is why UCU was on strike on the 10 November 2015 and the 24 February 2016, and will continue to campaign and take action until a resolution is reached nationally, or locally. UCU recently tabled a request for a local pay deal called Pay+ and now call on members and their families, friends and colleagues to sign this petition to convince the management of Sussex Coast College that its staff need to be respected, to be valued, and most importantly to be listened to. For too long the valuable work that staff do at Sussex Coast College has been under valued. Help make a difference for your local college by reclaiming it for the local community, offering the curriculum and skills training that Hastings and Rye deserve. At the heart of this, it is more than pay, it is about the quality of education given to young adults in Further Education, and Hastings and Rye.
Also please raise this issue with your local MP and Local Councilors so they too can raise this issue.
If you wish to send letters of support for this cause, please do so by contacting the UCU Branch Secretary (firstname.lastname@example.org), Principal Clive Cooke and Chair of Governors, Tony Campbell, at:
Sussex Coast College Hastings,