UCAC says government proposals are unnecessary, unfair and will have negative impact on students
Striking teachers in Wales have today received strong support from parents and members of the public.
Members of UCAC were on strike over the Westminster Government’s proposed cuts to pensions, with many schools, further education colleges and universities affected.
UCAC general secretary Elaine Edwards said: “We’re grateful to parents, other members of the public and to UCAC members for their strong show of support today. This is the first time in more than quarter of a century that UCAC has called a national strike which just goes to show the strength of feelings on the pensions issue.
“We sincerely hope that it’ll be possible to avoid further strike action – but that’s in the government’s hands now. They must take note of the message that’s being delivered loud and clear by the profession; and they must come to the negotiating table with a willingness to negotiate.”
Explaining the reasons for the strike, she continued: “The government’s proposals are totally unnecessary and absolutely unfair. Asking teachers and lecturers to pay more each month, to work until they’re 68 and even then to receive smaller payments in retirement shows a lack of understanding of the nature of the profession and also a complete lack of respect to educators.
“The Teachers’ Pension Scheme is sustainable. That isn’t the problem. The problem is the enormous deficit created by the bankers – but the government won’t own up to that.”
“For teachers, taking strike action doesn’t come easily; we’re all too aware of the effect on pupils and their parents. But we’re concerned that this attack on pensions will have a negative impact on educational standards by making teaching a less attractive profession – and we know that that’s a matter of concern for parents too.”
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