Page last updated at 19:18 GMT, Friday, 6 November 2009

Strike vote over sacked lecturer

Glyndwr University
The lecturer was dismissed from the university last month

Staff at Wrexham's Glyndwr University have voted "overwhelmingly" for strike action in support of a sacked lecturer.

The University and College Union (UCU) says Hamish Murphy was dismissed for exposing alleged bullying by management.

Members also voted for action other than a strike in support of Mr Murphy.

The university has previously strongly denied any dismissal related to union activity and has been asked to comment about the result of the ballot.

The UCU claims Mr Murphy's dismissal followed "a long-running dispute between between UCU and the university over management bullying and harassment".

It claims Mr Murphy, a union branch chair, was "instrumental in exposing the serious problem of management bullying and harassment of staff at the university".

Appeal process

The UCU said he was dismissed from his post as a lecturer in youth and community studies on 7 October and was escorted from the premises.

It has appealed against the decision, and claims a recent report by the conciliation and arbitration service (Acas) "vindicated" Mr Murphy's claims.

Acas said such reports were confidential between the parties involved, and it could not comment.

A Glyndwr university spokesman previously said: "The university cannot comment on this case as it is still subject to the appeal process.

"The university strongly denies however that it has ever dismissed any member of staff for undertaking trade union activities."

In June 2008, the UCU announced plans to ballot members at the university (then known as the North East Wales Institute), after claims it failed to tackle alleged staff bullying.

At the time, the UCU said at least eight members of staff had complained of bullying.

Management responded then by saying it did not tolerate bullying and took staff welfare seriously.

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