The results of the pay and USS ballots in higher education branches have been published and employers have been informed. In both ballots, the results amount to an overwhelming vote for industrial action and a clear message from staff to employers.
In the pay ballot, a record 55 post-92 and pre-92 branches are in a position to take industrial action, with a higher overall turnout (49%) and a larger yes vote (74%) than ever before. In USS, 43 branches are in a position to take action, with an even higher yes vote of 79% and an overall turnout of 53%.
These results are a testament to the hard work and brilliant campaigning of UCU’s members and staff. But most importantly, they show that our employers have badly misjudged their conduct in both disputes. In both sets of negotiations they have made offers that were clearly inadequate. Our members responded by giving the union a convincing mandate for strike action.
The sector needs to change. I have called on employers to return to negotiations immediately. In the meantime, the union will plan for the next phase of each dispute. UCU’s higher education committee will meet shortly to discuss the results and consider our next steps, including the nature, timing, and scale of industrial action.
Thank you to all of the UCU members, reps, officials, and everyone else who made these results possible.
UCU general secretary