UCU pause "working to contract" action over USS negotiations

UCU has notified the University that it is to suspend the continuous industrial action it has been asking its members to take since October 2011. UCU representatives will now return to the discussions with the HE employers’ representatives over the funding arrangements of the scheme which were halted when UCU commenced its action.

The action was in response to the changes to the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) which were implemented in October 2011. The action is scheduled to be suspended with effect from Wednesday 26 September 2012.

The suspension will remain in force for a reasonable period of time whilst constructive negotiations take place, however UCU has indicated that it reserves the right to resume the action should it deem it necessary to do so.

Since the last scheme valuation in 2011, the funding position of USS has moved from a deficit of £2.9 billion to £9.8 billion. The Chief Executive of USS Ltd recently commented that the deterioration in deficit position was because, although assets had grown by 4.4%, this growth was more than offset by a 24% increase in the liabilities – the pension promises already made which will be paid in the future.