10 reasons to vote YES in the UCU USS ballot

  1. EVERYONE WILL LOSE – the proposal to set the cap on defined benefits at £40,000 means that ALL lecturers, associate professors and professors and ALL administrators at level 4 and above will lose out. For a summary of what these cuts will mean to your pension look here.
  2. Our pension is our deferred pay – this represents a huge pay cut. We would not accept our pay being slashed – we must not accept our pension being slashed.
  3. There is no agreement about the value of the USS fund. Many dispute the pessimistic calculations used by the employers.
  4. If there is a shortfall in the USS fund it is a consequence of the banking crisis and subsequent steps taken by governments. We didn’t cause that crisis – and we shouldn’t pay for it.
  5. Many academics don’t start their careers until they are in their late twenties or early thirties. It is already difficult to build up a full profile of contributions.
  6. Problems caused by years spent on low-paid fixed-term contracts will be compounded by these changes.
  7. The proposed scheme will make pension provision in pre-1992 universities significantly worse than those in post-1992 institutions (who are in the Teachers’ Pension Scheme).
  8. Pension changes should be the outcome of proper negotiations – not imposed.
  9. A YES vote will strengthen the hand of UCU negotiators in the difficult negotiations which lie ahead.
  10. Industrial action is difficult but it works- it ensured some of the worst excesses of the two tier system were alleviated in 2011 and in 2014 it secured our first above inflation pay rise for many years.


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