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Prentis warns of 'sustained' strikes

Millions of public sector workers were preparing for the fight of their lives to defend jobs, pensions and services, raising the prospect of "sustained" strikes, a union leader said yesterday.

Dave Prentis, general secretary of Unison, warned of a campaign of industrial action "without precedent," involving more than a million workers which he predicted would "weaken" the Government.

In a speech to Unison's annual conference in Manchester, Mr Prentis said: "If the Government fails to listen, to heed our warnings, to negotiate in good faith, I say to David Cameron – you ain't seen nothing yet. We will strike to defend our pensions."

Hundreds of academics, staff and students are due to hold mass strikes and demonstrations at the London Metropolitan University – one of the largest in the country – from 8am this morning over decisions to cut jobs and almost two thirds of the courses on offer from next year.