University news

University and College Union (UCU) further strike action

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On Thursday (27 January), we received confirmation from UCU that they will be taking further industrial action over USS pension, pay and other working conditions*.

We are not part of the industrial action on USS. At our University action is in respect of pay and working conditions, where the vote in November last year, just exceeded the legal threshold for action (50.4%). In total 728 staff voted in favour of such action. We have over 12,000 staff across the University.

UCU industrial action will take the form of discontinuous strikes on 21, 22 and 28 February, 1 and 2 March. Action short of a strike, as we were previously notified, will continue ending no later than 3 May 2022.

We absolutely understand how important pay and working conditions, and indeed pensions, are to colleagues and we take these views and concerns very seriously.

We also recognise the right of colleagues to take this action but continue to be extremely concerned about the impact on our whole community, particularly on our students who have suffered so much over the past 22 months.

You can find more information and guidance about the strike action, on our website:

In particular, we’d like to reassure you that we will do everything we can to minimise any impact on your teaching, learning and wider experience and will of course keep you fully informed of any developments.

A separate Unison ballot on pay concludes today (Friday 28 January) and we will provide details of the outcome when we receive them.

Further information:

  • Pay and pensions are negotiated nationally.
  • In the recent re-ballot on changes to the USS pension arrangement announced on 18 January 2022, our turnout was 47.77% of eligible UCU members, so failed to reach the legal 50% threshold required to give a mandate for strike action. 84% (836 staff) of those who voted were in favour of strike action; about 6,300 members of our staff are USS members.
  • In November 2021, in a separate vote on pay and working conditions, the turnout of eligible UCU members was 50.4%, so just exceeding the 50% threshold. 74% (728 staff) of those voting in this ballot were in favour of strike action. We have a total of over 12,000 staff across the University all of whom are affected by pay and conditions.  

* By ‘working conditions’, UCU is referring to pay gaps, workloads, and casual employment.

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