Sally Hunt wins landslide in UCU general secretary poll

Sally Hunt has been re-elected as general secretary of the University and College Union after defeating her only opponent Mark Campbell by a margin of 6,835 votes and gaining 73 per cent of the ballots cast.

March 2, 2012

The UCU said the margin of Ms Hunt's victory was more than five times greater than when she was elected first general secretary of the newly-merged union in 2007, when she won by 1,346 votes.

Mr Campbell, a senior lecturer in computing at London Metropolitan University, had been backed by the UCU Left, an increasingly influential presence on the national executive committee, the body responsible for conducting UCU business outside its annual congress.

However, Ms Hunt’s victory will be seen a victory for her more moderate stance. “I stood on a platform of improving services for members and supporting branches, campaigning on what matters and giving members more say in the union's decisions,” she said after the result was announced.

“Achieving this will mean making difficult choices such as reducing the size of our national executive committee to that of other unions in order to put more resources on the front line.

“This election result and the strong mandate I have received shows that UCU members recognise the need for positive change within the union if we are to rise to the many challenges we face.”

She added: “UCU's role today is not just to protect members' professional interests but also to stand up for the value of education itself. Improving support for members and branches in the current climate is not an optional extra, it is essential to protect our people wherever they work.”

The results for UCU vice-president and other elected officials are likely to be available early next week, a spokesman for the union said. The number of valid ballot papers returned for the general secretary vote was 14,717 out of 117,918 issued, a proportion of 12.5 per cent.

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