Unite the union today (8 November) announced that its continuous strike action has been suspended at the University of Dundee following ‘constructive’ talks.

The University of Dundee’s senior management team has now agreed to remove the Defined Contributions proposal at the heart of the dispute, and it will now work with the trade unions to explore all Defined Benefit options.

Unite will now suspend strike action from tomorrow (Tuesday 9 November) in order to consult with its members on the new offer. It is anticipated that an amended pension scheme proposal will be put to the University Court for endorsement imminently, subject to approval from Unite’s members.

The dispute stems from the University of Dundee’s decision in March 2021 to propose the closure of the Defined Benefits Pension Scheme to Grades 1-6, and to replace it with a Defined Contributions Scheme. The proposal could have meant that lower paid workers would lose up to 50 per cent of their pension plunging workers into ‘pension poverty’. The proposal would also have disproportionally affected female workers who make up 70 per cent of the current scheme’s existing members.

Susan Robertson, Unite industrial officer, said: “Unite’s members said enough is enough and took a stand against this injustice. Months have now been wasted by the University of Dundee which up until now consistently refused to explore the defined benefit pension options which we proposed. It has taken the strike action by our members, and the unanimous backing from Dundee city councillors to get them back round the table. We still have a long way to go as we may have won the first battle, but we have not won the war.”

ENDS