La Trobe University should recognise the outstanding dedication and huge sacrifice that staff have made throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and look for alternative savings measures to sacking staff, the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) said today.
This follows the anticipated announcement this morning by Vice Chancellor John Dewar that there will be a further 200 forced job losses.
NTEU La Trobe Branch President, Alysia Rex said today, “The federal government has shown complete disregard for the University sector during the COVID pandemic and this puts the university in a difficult position.”
“I am disappointed John Dewar has made this announcement without exhausting all other options. I urge Professor Dewar to work with the union to find alternatives to involuntary redundancies. Staff have shown great loyalty and sacrifice over the past year and deserve better.”
NTEU La Trobe Branch is proposing alternatives such as job shares and pathway to retirement contracts. The Branch is also calling for a review of the use of external consultants, and permanent reductions to excessive salaries and bonuses of executive staff.
Susanne Newton, Branch Vice President (Professional Staff) said, “I know exactly how important it is that La Trobe cares for its staff during this time. While I understand the financial reality we are dealing with, the university’s most important asset is its people, and the university must do its best to care for the workers that make this place run. There are better ways to do this than through involuntary redundancies.”
The Branch has created a petition and invites all staff, alumni and students to sign: https://www.megaphone.org.au/petitions/forced-redundacies-are-not-the-answer