Consultation responses reveal strong majority support for UCU’s preferred approach

USS has just released their report on the responses to the statutory consultation on UUK’s proposed changes to pensions. It reveals strong majority member support of UCU’s preferred approach involving the payment of higher contributions to retain current benefits. As USS’s covering note to the report says:

some individuals responded to say they would rather pay more and retain the current benefits, and this view was strongly supported by the answers to question 5 (see section 3.7) where the most popular of the four named approaches to dealing with increased scheme costs was to pay higher contributions…. [my bold emphasis added]

Here is question 5:

UCU’s proposals call for option D involving contribution increases to preserve current benefits in preference to any of UUK’s proposed cuts, which constitute options A, B, and C. In this document, USS provides a Condorcet ranking — about which see more here and here—of options A, B, C, and D. Here is the ranking:

1st: Contribution increases to retain current benefits (D) — ranks above all other options in pairwise comparisons

2nd: Reduction in the DB/DC salary threshold from £60k to £40k (A) — net dispreferred to D by -1175; ranks above all other options

3rd: Reduction in the accrual rate from 1/75 to 1/85 (B) — net dispreferred to D by -1575, net dispreferred to A by -1322; ranks above remaining option

4th: A 2.5% CPI cap in revaluation of pensions for inflation (C)— net dispreferred to D by -1518, net dispreferred to A by -1378, net dispreferred to B by -824 (therefore ranks below all other options in pairwise comparisons)

The above results strengthen the case I make in this blog post that UUK is acting contrary to their duties arising from the consultation in their dismissal of UCU’s proposals:

These results also strengthen the case I make in this blog post that UUK’s proposal of an almost indiscernible mitigation of their CPI cap on inflation is a wholly inadequate response to the consultation:

Rather than UUK’s risible tweak of their proposed cuts, the case for paying modestly higher contributions to retain current benefits until April 2023 is overwhelming:

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Professor of Philosophy, LSE & Rutgers. On UCU national negotiating team for USS pensions.

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Michael Otsuka

Michael Otsuka

Professor of Philosophy, LSE & Rutgers. On UCU national negotiating team for USS pensions.

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