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Long-running Lambeth College dispute over as UCU accepts new offer

The long-running dispute between the University and College Union (UCU) and Lambeth College is over after members accepted an improved offer from the college this evening.

UCU members walked out indefinitely on Monday after a number of one day strikes over the last month, but they will now return to work tomorrow morning.

The row over contracts had already seen members of the union walk out for five weeks last summer, the longest strike in the union’s history.

The union claimed new contracts introduced for new staff last April would create a “two-tier” system.

In a statement this evening the UCU said a settlement had been brokered that guaranteed no current staff would be forced on to the new contracts. It said there had also been improvements to the contracts regarding teaching hours and sick pay.

UCU regional official Una O'Brien, said: “UCU members at Lambeth have demonstrated their resolve throughout this long and at times bitter dispute.

"We are pleased that an acceptable resolution has been found and accepted by our members. We hope we can now restore good working relations with the college and get back to business as usual.”

Lambeth College principal Mark Silverman said he welcomed the end of strike action and was pleased the “put the dispute behind us”

“This agreement brings an end to what has been a considerable distraction for our managers and staff, and I am pleased that we can now focus our time and effort on the important work of teaching and supporting our learners,” he said.

“We are very clear on the steps we need to take to improve the quality of our teaching and to assure our financial position as we build a high-quality sustainable college for south London.”

Related stories:

UCU strikes again at Lambeth College - but end to dispute could be in sight – January 2015

Lambeth College appeals to strikers as Ofsted calls – December 2014

Lambeth College to be hit by wave of strikes – November 2014

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