Monash Redundancies Are Shortsighted
Mass redundancies at Monash University are short-sighted and all other options should be examined before job losses are contemplated, said Colin Long, NTEU Victorian Division Secretary.
“The NTEU does not accept that redundancies are necessary at Monash as a result of the fluctuations of the International Student market,” said Dr Long.
Monash University yesterday announced that it was planning to reduce expenditure for 2011 by $45 million. The University claims that this is a result of a 10 percent downturn in International Student enrolments.
“While we have been expressing our concerns at the over-reliance on the International Student market, we believe that Monash should be looking at other savings measures before cutting jobs.
“We will be working closely with our members at Monash University to ensure that staff and students are affected as little as possible. We want to ensure that any redundancy process is open and transparent,” said Dr Long.
The Monash University Annual Report 2009 states that the University and its companies recorded an operating surplus of $133.3 million for the year ending 31 December 2009. Their operating margin – the ratio between income and expenditure – is 9 percent, almost twice the DEEWR rate of 3-5 percent.
“Cutting staff as the first response to a decrease in income is a very short sighted response, and the NTEU would be happy to discuss with Monash where other savings could be made instead. For example, the University spent over $18 million on external consultants last year.
“The situation at Monash University is a symptom of the continuing underfunding of the University Sector that has yet to be properly addressed by the Rudd/Gillard Government after a decade of neglect by the Howard Government.”