• Sun. Jun 23rd, 2024

UK Government to consult on minimum service levels for striking university staff

ByLucy Frewin

Oct 3, 2023
A woman speaking infront of a picture of an aerial landscape pictureSecretary of State for Education Gillian Keegan

The UK government will consult on the introduction of minimum service levels for university staff during strikes. 

In a post on X (formerly Twitter) the Secretary of State for Education, Gillian Keegan announced the consultation saying: 

“University students are being let down by relentless strikes.”


In a statement on their website, the government states the consultation would include: “looking at how to guarantee continued services such as teaching contact hours and marking their work during walkouts.”

They continue: “If introduced, the minimum service level could ensure students get the education they pay for, protecting them from strike action.” 

The consultation comes in light of the Government’s 2023 Strikes Act which forces trade union workers in the UK to provide a minimum service during a strike. 

Currently the law only applies to health, education services, fire and rescue, border security and nuclear decommissioning services. 

Read More: UCU vote to end marking and assessment boycott

Responding to the government’s announcement, UCU general secretary Jo Grady said: 

”This is a spiteful attack on workers everywhere from a party that has run out of options and will soon be run out of office. 

“We will not stand by while Tory MPs try to force our members to cross their own picket lines. 

“The recent strike action on campus is a direct result of the market-driven dogma of successive Tory governments. 

“They have created funding inequalities across the sector and encouraged university leaders to act as intransigent CEOs. 

“UCU will use every means at our disposal to fight these threats to our fundamental freedoms alongside the whole union movement.’ 

Gillian Keegan Minister for Care and Mental Health at COP26” by UK Government is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.