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The world’s largest Union for post-school academic and academic related staff was one step closer to realisation as members of NATFHE - The University & College Lecturers Union - and of the Association of University Teachers (AUT) in the United Kingdom voted overwhelmingly for the new union which would have more than 110 000 members. Titled the University and College Union (UCU), it will come into action on 1st June 2006 and then enter a transitional year until it becomes a formal body in June 2007.
The new union will represent further and higher education lecturers, managers, researchers and many academic related staff. Dr Steve Wharton and John Wilkin, presidents of AUT and NATFHE respectively, added: 'A bigger stronger union will be able to do more for our 116 000 members across the sectors we represent. We are determined that the best of both AUT and NATFHE's traditions are combined to create a vibrant professional union which will be a major player in education both here and across the globe. As the largest further and higher education union in the world, UCU will be a voice to be listened to and respected by all.’NATFHE press release