NTEU media release: Abandonment of damaging job cuts welcomed – but Union warns Vice Chancellor has yet to make a financial case for any change
The National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) today welcomed Vice Chancellor Ian Young’s decision to abandon his so-called ‘re-positioning’ strategy for the Australian National University (ANU), that would have seen up to 150 jobs lost and the imposition of retrospective performance standards.
The back-down was communicated in an e-mail from the Vice Chancellor to the ANU’s staff on Monday afternoon.
“We are very pleased the Vice Chancellor has taken the wise step of not proceeding down what would have been a very destructive path,” said Stephen Darwin, NTEU ACT Secretary.
“While NTEU is prepared to work with the Vice Chancellor to recast his strategy, we would warn him the overwhelming majority of staff firmly believes he has yet to make a convincing financial case for change.”
“In particular, the Vice Chancellor has so far failed to provide adequate, clear and timely financial data to support his demand for a larger operating surplus.”
“This is one of the main reason’s his approach was so comprehensively rejected by staff and students.”
“The NTEU hopes he won’t make the same mistake again.”
“We support the Vice Chancellor’s commitment to explore all processes other than forced redundancies as the basis for any future cost cutting initiatives.”
“We also welcome his clear, though belated, recognition of the critical role of the ANU Enterprise Agreement.”
“The Agreement will ensure ANU staff have their legitimate rights to fairness and equity recognised and will not be subject to arbitrary processes.”
“Now is time for the Vice-Chancellor to re-engage with the University’s staff and students to explore constructive strategies aimed at enhancing and expanding what the ANU can achieve.”
For more information and comment:
Stephen Darwin, NTEU ACT Division Secretary: 0433 747 007
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