James Cook University wants to slash 10 per cent of professional jobs

National Tertiary Education Union

James Cook University has released a radical proposal which would slash 10 per cent of professional staff positions.

The Change Management Proposal (attached) puts forward cutting 130 out of 1313 professional staff jobs at the university.

The plan would make 78 staff redundant and scrap 52 unfilled positions.

A three-week consultation period closes on Friday 7 October, with a final Change Plan to be released three weeks later on 27 October.

Quotes attributable to NTEU Queensland Secretary, Michael McNally:

“This will be devastating to those people who have found out that their position is proposed to be made redundant. It is likewise devastating to those colleagues who remain behind who face the double whammy of losing friends and colleagues and having to pick up the work that is inevitably left behind.”

“I am not sure how this cutting mentality will turn around the performance of James Cook University.”

“It’s not a great way for a new Vice-Chancellor to introduce himself to staff. I don’t think there is a coincidence that this restructure is taking place while we are bargaining.

“Why is the plan always to cut more staff? Where is the plan to attract more students?”

Quotes attributable to Bronwen Forster, NTEU JCU Branch Committee member and Library and Information Services staff member:

“The Library seems to have avoided the worst of the cuts, but I really feel for colleagues who have found out their positions are proposed to be made redundant.

“JCU staff have been here before. The continual rounds of redundancies, both voluntary and forced, have not improved the ability of James Cook University to attract students, but management still pay themselves huge salaries. Staff always have to pay the price for poor management.

“I’ve been here for twenty years and they have always cried poor. I don’t believe them anymore.

“They could make significant cost savings in other areas like travel and building fancy infrastructure so they don’t have to cut their best asset – their staff.”

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