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UCU industrial action – what can students do to help striking staff?

ByRosie Hilton

Feb 12, 2018

Throughout the majority of the University of Edinburgh’s student body, there seems to be a clear and collective will to support and assist staff members through the upcoming weeks of striking. Today a meeting was held by staff members of the ECA, with Edinburgh University Students’ Association representative Kai O’ Doherty and other students present, in order to develop links with this student body ahead of the action taking place.

The meeting shed light on a number of actions students can take in order to support striking staff members, and The Student have compiled a list of what you can do to help your lecturers

1.Get Informed

Aside from publishing a message from the principal, the University of Edinburgh has yet to release a full guide to the strikes. However, the Students’ Association have put together a comprehensive list of information explaining what the strikes will involve, how it will affect students, and what you should do if you want to support staff.


The UCU website is also a great resource for up to date news and explanations of why the strike is taking place. Here’s the link below:


2. Write letters and emails to university management (updated 15/02/18)

One of the most helpful things you can do is to write to the principal about why action should be taken to end the strikes with a fair solution for staff members. If you are unsure what to write, templates can be found on this Facebook event:


You can even try tweeting the university – the more public, the more effective.

3. Join a picket line or support those who do

Staff and the UCU encourage students to join in with the protests. Picket lines are between 8-10 on strike days. (updated 27/2/18)

If you can’t join in, express your solidarity with staff by not crossing picket lines during the strikes, even if your tutorials or lectures are still going ahead. This also means avoiding use of the library and other university buildings during the strike days. It is your choice whether you attend university – you will not be stopped from entering any buildings, but doing so may indicate that you do not support staff action.

4. Attend the festival of solidarity (updated 27/2/18)

On the 27th February, the Students’ Association is hosting a Festival of Solidarity, providing free food to those on picket lines and giving platform to numerous speakers and performers: from drag acts to teach out discussions. Be sure to swing by Potterrow between 12.30 – 16.30 if you want to show your support. Please contact Kai O’Doherty (Vice President Activities and Services) if you wish to be involved in performing or speaking.

This article will be updated as we gain more information about picketing, rallies, dates and times, so check back here throughout the strike to see what you can do.



By Rosie Hilton

Editor in Chief

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