Employment negotiations are underway in several universities around the country including the University of Auckland, AUT and Massey where TEU members have all already met with employer representatives, and Lincoln where members are finalising claims to present to their employer.
TEU’s deputy secretary Nanette Cormack says government funding cuts and pressure on universities to comply with Steven Joyce’s micro-management mean this year is a tough one for both members and non-members.
“Members are making very modest claims, claims that we believe are fair and reasonable. We are lucky that high numbers of tertiary education staff support collective bargaining by joining their union. Without that strong collective commitment to fair working conditions over the last few years we believe that many important conditions and protections would have been clawed back by employers looking to save money.”
Nanette Cormack says the negotiations have interesting factors.
“The University of Auckland will be trying to rebuild a damaged relationship with its staff after its attacks on their research leave and promotions criteria at the last negotiations. Massey and Lincoln staff went without a pay rise at the last set of negotiations and can reasonably expect their employers to rebuild their pay scales.”
AUT and University of Auckland members both expect to continue negotiations during the coming fortnight while Massey members have adjourned negotiations to hold member meetings over the next two weeks. Lincoln members intend to begin negotiations in two weeks’ time.