The University of New England has continued its push for major changes to professional staff employment conditions despite offering little incentive in bargaining.
As previously reported UNE has continued to push for changes to current provisions including fixed-term employment, performance management and misconduct, grievance handling, dispute resolution and consultation on workplace change.
Briefly, UNE want to make it easier to employ professional staff on a fixed-term or temporary basis. Where similar flexibility has been introduced at other universities we have seen a marked decline in permanent employment as employers favour less secure arrangements. We have advised UNE that we are unlikely to agree to the changes the University is seeking in the context of the current round of negotiations.
The University is also wants to dump employee nominees from its current internal review processes. The existing arrangements give staff a genuine role in determining important decisions like termination of employment and bullying complaints.
CPSU NSW Senior Industrial Officer, Thane Pearce, said “UNE are pressing for more insecure work and greater managerial prerogative.”
“While the CPSU NSW will always consider an overall package on its merits, we can’t see any reason to trade-off conditions like these when universities across the sector are settling for pay outcomes at or below inflation.”
“We expect UNE to follow suit and offer staff a pay deal at or below inflation.”
“If we’re correct and that’s what they put up, we’ll be urging professional staff to vote it down.”
“We accept that in terms of funding our public universities have been smashed by the Federal LNP government. But we’d be crazy to endorse whole scale reductions to employment conditions and a sub-CPI pay offer.”
“It’s not going to happen.” Mr Pearce said.
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