UCOL strike in two weeks’ time

Posted By TEU on Feb 20, 2014 |

Tertiary Update Vol 17 No 2

Staff at UCOL plan to take strike action on 4 March unless their employer makes progress towards giving them a pay rise.

“We don’t want to go on strike. We want to be there for our students. We’ve tried to put this off as long as possible so UCOL can do the right thing,” says TEU branch president Tina Smith.

Since 2010 pay for UCOL staff has shrunk in real terms, compared to inflation.

Smith says the next 13 days are a countdown for UCOL to prove it is a good local employer, which gives pay rises.

“UCOL has good staff, giving local people the skills they need for local jobs. We deserve fair pay.”

Negotiations between the polytechnic and union members began months ago but the polytechnic still has not offered a pay rise, or even agreed to talk about a pay rise. Staff members had previously tried actions that did not affect students, such as picketing during a speech by the chief executive and all wearing red clothes to work, to no avail. Yesterday, the union’s local committee voted to go on strike, but they have decided to leave the strike as long as possible, to give the polytechnic time to change its mind.

“We don’t want to strike and we don’t want students to lose out. UCOL mustn’t let this happen.”

Also in Tertiary Update this week

  1. Vice-chancellors reject council changes
  2. Psychologists say postgrad allowance cuts will harm profession
  3. Aoraki – where the restructuring never ends
  4. Living wage rises to $18.80
  5. TEC wants fewer universities

Other news

New Zealand needs the facts about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement on the table rather than more attacks on critics of the deal, writes Jane Kelsey – Dominion Post

Scientists, researchers and politicians gathered this week to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the Marsden Fund – The New Zealand Herald

Massey University students nationwide will be without a print magazine from next month on, as a result of the voluntary student membership law introduced two years ago – The Wireless

Just under half of Otago Polytechnic’s nursing graduates from last year have found jobs – Otago Daily Times

Eleven forestry workers, dads, husbands, sons and brothers, were killed at work in the forestry industry in the last year alone. Many of these families, along with others, who have lost loved ones in the forest want to come together to remember those taken away from them. – Give a Little

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