Jo Grady Profile picture
Sep 13, 2018 11 tweets 5 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter

Initial thoughts in thread to follow👇 #USS…
As ever, the excellent @JosephineCumbo has provided a succinct summary of what the recommendations are, & I don't see any need to reproduce that.
I'm v happy to see the disruptive role of Test 1 being acknowledged & criticised. I'm also v happy to see suggestion that employers attitude to risk & the affect this had on the covenant be re-evaluated. Likewise it's good to see assertion that updated data & measures be used.
In short, lots to commend the JEP. It takes aim at both UUK & USS (I'm gonna tweet screen grabs of these below with comment), particularly the role of UUK in triggering the dispute. However, this highlighted passage is a worry.
The Panel is clear about damaging nature of UUK risk survey. The survey played a key role in triggering downgrading of the scheme & thus our strike. This must be seized upon by UCU in any future negotiations. We are clear about where blame lies, any compromise acknowledges this.
Compromise 'may' be needed. But the extent to which compromise is needed equally must be discussed in context of who needs to compromise the most, and where blame lies in creating the mess in the first place. The language of compromise often assumes meeting in the middle. #USS
Debating what this compromise entails, and winning that debate is now what we must do. The JEP provides us with legitimation & officialdom of what many of us have spent the summer proving. But it doesn't provide us with anything more. Lot's of hard work still ahead.
Beyond the regulator recommendations, the main conclusion I'm taking from the JEP is that it confirms that #USS is fine, & with some funding tweaks will continue to be fine. No strikes were needed, our scheme is fine. This MUST be remembered & reinforced as we negotiate further.
We were forced to make massive sacrifices earlier this year, & HE was thrown into chaos, when everything was fine. This is the lesson of trade unionism & industrial action. JOIN YOUR UNION, STAND UP TO THE BOSSES! There is an alternative to the 'reality' they present you.
Genuinely welcome the report & its findings, but a JEP could have been commissioned back in 2017. It wasn't because UUK wanted to make changes. They must change their stance now. We sacrificed a lot for the JEP, & will have to continue to push. @Sam_Marsh101 & SWG will be vital.
It's not clear to me how @ucu can continue to negotiate #USS further whilst current personnel at @UniversitiesUK remain. Given the findings of the JEP, how can we have any good faith in Jarvis and his team?

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More from @DrJoGrady

Sep 14, 2018
UCU members have already demonstrated significant compromise. The ballot that ended strike action was a massive act of compromise. That compromise produced the JEP, & the JEP has vindicated & endorsed the position of UCU members. It has demonstrated the necessity of #USSstrike
The #USSstrike resulted in many of us losing 14 days pay. It required emotional support from loved ones. In some cases it diminished us in the eyes of some colleagues, and in other cases it resulted in punitive actions or threats from our employers.
If compromises are to be made, it is fair to demand they come from @UniversitiesUK & our employers. The JEP makes clear that with minor tweaks USS is sound. As such we need to understand the #USSstrike as employer initiated industrial action. We were left with no choice.
Read 6 tweets
Apr 12, 2018
"The great strike 2018" session at #AAG2018 IS OPEN! When I can I'll tweet here. Follow the hashtag #NotAllGeographers
speaking about what happened on social media during #USSstrikes via 3 slices. Slice one: EARLY
Early phase involved repugnance with neoliberal VC's & development of #notallgeographers hashtag. Complex psychosocial movement positioning certain VCs as neoliberal beast.
Read 34 tweets
Apr 5, 2018
Unhappy about proposed #USS pension cut?

Not convinced current #UUK offer protects you from significant & long term pension cuts. What if I told you that it's not the only cut your #USS pension has experienced 👇👇👇 #USSstrikes
Cut 1: Employer pension contribution holidays

Between 1983-1997, employers cut their contributions from 18.55% to 14%, resulting in an estimated £7 billion being lost from the value of the fund.
Cut 2: Closure of USS as a final salary (FS) scheme

By closing FS scheme in 2015, & moving members into a lower value DB scheme, it is estimated the value of a #USS pension was cut by 20% on average.
Read 5 tweets
Feb 23, 2018
As an industrial relations expert I've studied a lot of industrial disputes & have a few thoughts about this request from UUK. Join me 👇
We might personally be eager to get back to work & end the strikes. This is understandable. But without any reassurances that we will maintain our DB pension, no strike action should be halted in order to return to the negotiating table.
If we use the junior doctors dispute as a recent example of a strike that many seemed destined to succeed & gained huge public support. But their goal was irreparably damaged & undermined by calling off action early, & without concrete contract improvements on the table.
Read 9 tweets

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