USS Strike: What’s happening?
SOAS UNISON members are taking strike action on 20, 21 and 24 February over changes to their pension, the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS). Members who pay into the USS scheme were balloted for strike action earlier this year.
Our academic colleagues in the UCU trade union are also striking for 14 days across February and March against the USS pension changes, pay cuts, BAME & gender pay gaps, casualisation, and workloads. We are striking together for a fairer future for everyone at SOAS.
Why are we striking?
University employers are ignoring pension experts and want us to pay more based on a flawed assessment of the value of the USS pension pot. Changes to our pension since 2011 mean a typical USS scheme member is around £240,000 worse off in retirement than they would have been without the changes. Over the past few months, further changes have been pushed through by employers to increase our pension contributions (9.6% rather than 8.8% of our salary) and we expect that this will be raised further in 2021. These increases will price lower-paid staff out of the pension scheme altogether, meaning some of us face poverty in our retirement. We believe staff have given enough and want our employers to agree a fairer long-term solution.
The dispute can be resolved
The National Union of Students (NUS), MPs, and others are calling on the employers to stand with their staff and recognise the importance of pensions to UNISON and UCU members. UNISON and UCU members are determined to continue our action until an agreement can be found.
How can I find out more information?
Check out the FAQ: UNISON and UCU Strikes at SOAS, Spring 2020.
Para más información lea las Preguntas Comunes: Huelga de UNISON y UCU a SOAS, la Primavera de 2020.
If you need further information on what the issues are relating to USS, Sheffield UCU have produced this helpful video explaining what is at stake: