Information on planned strike action

The UNISON trade union has called on its members to take strike action and has outlined its intended strike dates. This may mean there is some disruption to University services during this time, but classes will not be affected.

We have put together the following FAQ to provide you with as much information as possible about the strike and how it may affect you.


When will the strikes take place?

The UNISON trade union has asked its members at the University to strike on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 20 September
  • Wednesday 21 September
  • Monday 3 October
  • Tuesday 4 October

What is a strike?

Union members who take part in the strike action will not work on the strike days. As is normal practice in these circumstances, the University will withhold pay from trade union members for each day that they take strike action.

Is the University open during the strike action?

Yes. The University is open as normal. We expect our students to come to the University on these days and classes will not be affected.

Can I join the strike?

The action is for UNISON trade union members only and is not a legitimate reason to miss classes or assessments. You should attend all classes as usual.

Can I cross a picket line?

A picket line is a form of protest where people congregate at a location, usually at the entrance and exits of the campus buildings, to draw attention to their cause.

Staff on picket lines should not stop you from entering a building or prevent your access to any part of the campus. Staff do not wish to disrupt students' education and these picket lines should not feel intimidating.

What services will be affected during the strike?

Our libraries will remain open, but we anticipate a reduced staff presence and face-to-face support. There may also be delays with the delivery of Click and Collect and Inter Library Loans services.

IT support both on campus and via the Service Desk will also be reduced. It is likely there will be delays in responding to IT support calls and priority will be given to urgent issues affecting learning and teaching. You can find IT and Library support contact details below:

We are also anticipating a reduced catering service. As a minimum, hot drinks and cold food options including sandwiches will be available at all campuses:

  • Sighthill – The Atrium will be open 8am-2.45pm
  • Craiglockhart – The Espresso Lab will be open 8am-2.45pm
  • Merchiston – The Triangle will be open 8am-2.45pm

Please note that Merchiston and Sighthill’s Espresso Labs will be closed on Tuesday 20 and Wednesday 21 September.

Where can I get more support if I am particularly worried by the strike?

If you have any concerns about your studies, speak to your Personal Development Tutor (PDT), programme leader or module leader, and we encourage you to take advantage of the University's Academic Skills team.

You may also wish to speak to a member of the Student Wellbeing & Inclusion team.

Will Graduation be affected?

There will no changes made to the dates of Graduation. Graduation ceremonies, and the process to graduate in absentia, remain the same. If you would like to find out more, visit our Graduation section on My Napier.

What should students do if they want to make a complaint as a result of the strike action?

We will always consider any complaint we receive from our students about anything they put to us. We always ask that you review the information on the complaints page on My Napier before submitting a complaint.

While our Complaints Handling Procedure does include “dissatisfaction with the University’s policy” as something which would constitute grounds for a complaint, it also states that policy may be set at the discretion of the University and employment-related matters are areas where we do exercise this discretion.

We will not progress any complaints received from students about the occurrence of the strike action, but we will listen to complaints from students about any disadvantage they perceive as a result of how we have mitigated for the strike action. We ask that any such perceived disadvantage and the impact of it is clearly explained and evidenced in the complaint.

We will handle any complaints we receive on a case-by-case basis and, as with complaints we receive about anything, will seek to address them quickly and consistently.

Why is pay being deducted from staff on strike?

If staff choose to take part in strike action, pay will be deducted. We have shared information with all staff to explain how and when this will happen.

What will the University do with the money saved through salaries not being paid to staff on strike?

Staff who take part in strike action will not be entitled to pay from the University for strike days, and we are committed to ensuring that funds saved as a consequence of any strike action which impacted upon students will be re-prioritised to benefit students in a range of different ways.