This branch notes:

1) The drastic state of cuts to higher education and public services.

According to UCU General Secretary Sally Hunt,”Cuts in public funding of at least 25% for universities are likely to be announced next month by the government. This puts potentially 20,000 jobs at risk across higher education, and would have a devastating effect on the UK’s academic reputation.”

2) The decision by the Higher Education Committee not to organise a ballot for industrial action this autumn on the basis that it would not be wise “to lead members into premature action”.

This branch believes that:

1) UCU must take a strong position to defend jobs, pensions and pay, as well as the future of higher education

2) The attacks we are faced with are immediate, and require an immediate response. We cannot afford to wait until Spring 2011, as the HE sector will be under even greater threat.

This branch affirms its willingness to ballot for industrial action to defend jobs, pay, pensions and the future of higher education.

This branch calls for a Higher Education Special Sector Conference to take place in October to discuss a detailed plan and timeline for action.

Proposed by Des Freedman.
Seconded by John Wadsworth.

Motion passed 22 September 2010