Socialist Worker

Lecturers should vote for a pensions strike

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2581

Bosses are attacking UCU members pensions

Bosses' are attacking UCU members pensions (Pic: Guy Smallman)


UCU union members are likely to begin a ballot for strikes over pensions later this month.

The ballot would involve union members in older universities who are part of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS).

Bosses want to turn the defined benefit scheme into a defined contribution scheme—slashing the value of workers’ pensions.

UCU general secretary Sally Hunt wrote to members last week. She said the proposal “would mean the effective end of USS as we know it”.

“It is the worst proposal I have received in 20 years and we need to fight it,” she said.

“There is no point pretending that anything other than sustained strike action with the aim of hugely disrupting (and not rescheduling) lectures and classes in the New Year will make the employers listen.”

Nearly 87 percent of members said they would be prepared to strike to defend the scheme in a recent consultative ballot.

The turnout was nearly 56 percent—showing the potential to beat the new voting thresholds in the Tory Trade Union Act.

The mood is there to fight. UCU members need to go all out to build the biggest possible yes vote and turnout in the ballot and stop the bosses’ attack.


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