UCU’s Higher Education Committee voted last Friday to disregard the decisions of Conference 2021 and delay holding a Special HE Sector Conference (SHESC) until September 9th. See UCU Left’s report of the HEC meeting.
A Conference motion called for a SHESC to take place in the first two weeks of August to set the timetable for ballots and organise the campaigns over the Four Fights and USS pensions. Another called for the USS ballot to be conducted over the summer.
HEC’s decision to ignore the wishes of the sovereign policy-making body of the union not only undermines democracy, but threatens to derail the resistance we desperately need by limiting the window for action this autumn. Already UCU is out of sync with Unison, which has launched ballots of 48 of its HE branches over the 0% pay freeze imposed last year. So far, no campaign materials have been produced by UCU HQ to prepare members and branches for these crucial fights.
Come to this meeting to discuss how we ended up in this position and what we can do to salvage the situation. The meeting will be addressed by national negotiators for JNCHES and USS as well as other UCU Left NEC members. We will debate how we can coordinate our action with planned FE strikes over pay in the autumn, and discuss the motions branches will need to submit for the September SHESC.
Thursday 15th July, 7-8.30pm