Ucea insults those who have dedicated lives to welfare of students, says Mackney

May 26, 2006

Paul Mackney, the general secretary of lecturers' union Natfhe, will this week launch an impassioned attack against those who have questioned the morality of the union's boycott of student assessment. Speaking at the last-ever Natfhe conference, he was expected to condemn the comments of "hypocritical, sanctimonious" employers and commentators.

In his keynote address, due to be delivered after The Times Higher went to press, Mr Mackney was going to speak about his experiences of the "public-sector ethos in action" during the latest of his many recent spells in hospital following a heart attack.

He was expected to praise nurses for "acts of genuine human solidarity", saying: "Natfhe members, though less dramatically, are in that tradition too, transforming the lives of many who have been written off by society.

That's why it is so offensive when Ucea implies that our members have no regard for the welfare of their students. We have given our lives to developing our students yet academic pay over the past two decades has dropped by 40 per cent compared with average earnings."

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