The lecturers' union UCU is going for a strike against the Government's 19 December "final" terms on public sector pensions.
UCU Executive member Sean Vernell reports on the Socialist Worker website:
"The executive of the UCU lecturers’ union met today (Friday [20 January]) and voted three to one for a strike on 1 March over pensions and to invite other unions to join them...
"To break the impasse and to step up the campaign, UCU has put out a call for all the unions who have rejected the deal to meet to organise for a united strike on 1 March".
The 19 December terms included no significant improvement on the Government's "work longer, pay more, get less" plans for public-sector pensions, but at best some sideways rearrangements.
The UCU move will greatly strengthen the pressure for more action in unions like the PCS (civil service), NUT (teachers), and Unite (mainly in health and local government) which have declared the 19 December terms unacceptable but whose leaders have so far shied away from further action.
The gap between 19 December and 1 March will have damaged the momentum of the campaign, and serious efforts by the unions will be necessary to remobilise workers, but that is possible.
Unions should also plan to follow up 1 March rapidly with a continuous and self-controlling programme of rolling and selective action, sustained by strike levies. With higher pension contributions due to be deducted from workers' wages in April, time has run out for the old approach of one-day strikes followed by long gaps in which workers are advised to wait while union leaders ponder about whether and when to call a next one-day strike.