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Staff at the University of Leicester to strike against redundancies

STAFF at the University of Leicester will down tools on Wednesday, beginning a three-day strike over 26 compulsory redundancies.

The action was approved by 70 per cent of the University and College Union (UCU) members balloted.

University vice-chancellor Professor Nishan Canagarajah has since handed the 26 staff their redundancy notices and they are set to lose their jobs from August 3, the UCU said.

Seventy-two senior staff and professors have written to the university’s executive board to warn that some were targeted for redundancy because of their approach to research. They said that such a move would pose a serious threat to academic freedom.

Urging Prof Canagarajah to withdraw the threat to jobs and come to the negotiating table, UCU general secretary Jo Grady said: “The vice-chancellor is killing staff morale and chasing world-leading researchers out the door. He is completely detached from reality.”

Prof Canagarajah said he was “extremely disappointed” that the strike was going ahead, adding that the university was seeking to “minimise the impact of this strike on [its] students.”

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