I was absolutely delighted a couple of weeks ago to see the proposals for changes to the USS pension scheme. As a mid-rank lecturer, apparently, I can look forward to having my pension pot halved, and living on exactly the same amount as I did in my first post 12 years ago.
After 45 years of blood, sweat and tears, I’m only worth 21k a year pension. Seriously. Postdocs these days are getting at least 8k more than that in their first post. It is an insult.
Not that anyone coming into the scheme in the last few years is any better off.
We’re paying for all those superstars brought in at the last minute on huge salaries and bonuses for REF2014, and god knows who else. They’ll be fine on their 40k+ pension (MY pension!).
And this is why it is such an issue. I won’t have paid my mortgage off by the time I retire. I couldn’t afford to get a mortgage until recently after saving up a big deposit for 10 years. The next generation of PhD students coming into academia probably won’t have mortgages until well into their 40s, so they’ll have even more to pay off after retirement. So, none of us will end up retiring because we won’t want to have to sell our houses to move to one bedroom bungalows. In turn, there will be no jobs for the next generation of new academics.
Screw one generation on their pension and it will carry on feeding on down the line. Is it not enough that students get screwed on tuition fees, less studentships for basic research, less lectureships available, an even more cut throat publish or perish mentality, professors swinging in to stamp their name on junior staff’s grants and claim all the credit when all they did was add an electronic signature?
Piss on me, Piss on you.