Waikato general staff move closer to Living Wage

Posted By TEU on Feb 19, 2015 |

Tertiary Update Vol 18 No 3

The lowest paid general staff at the University of Waikato are much closer to the Living Wage now due to a new TEU negotiated collective agreement that lifts their base rate of pay up to $18.50 an hour.

A new Living Wage rate will be announced next week but it currently sits at $18.80 per hour.

The new agreement includes a 1.3 percent pay rise from October last year and a 1.5 percent pay rise from September this year.

Carla Jeffery, a librarian at the university, said the pay rise for general staff was the result of support and pressure from a diverse group of people who truly believe in the Living Wage.

She says the pay rise will be particularly important for general staff who are paid below the living wage, such as some book-shelvers in the library.

“This settlement means that those who were earning less are now on a more equal footing with others.”

“Considering the cost of living is constantly increasing and pay is not always keeping up with this, those in lower pay scales will have a better chance of financial security.”

Local TEU organiser Megan Morris said union members also successfully negotiated improvements to sick leave and health and safety, including the provision of protective clothing for those who needed it and health and safety training for staff using new technology.

Morris said union members made progress on some of their claims and that they were able to resist claims from the university seeking cuts to terms and conditions.

“This is a reasonable settlement.  It will give stability for the next two years given the proposed changes to the Employment Relations Act which have been passed,” Morris said.

Also in Tertiary Update this week

  1. One-third of seats for staff and students
  2. Could an international agreement limit access to scholarship?
  3. Private Australian companies preying on vocational education

Other news

As part of New Zealand’s support for the international campaign “Our Right to Strike” the CTU wants to highlight the behaviour of Business New Zealand at the International Labour Organisation, where they have been active in the campaign by the global business lobby to undermine the right to strike in international law – CTU

The second phase of a large-scale shakeup at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa may mean more job cuts – Manawatu Standard

Education leader and gay rights activist Robin Duff has passed away. The Post Primary Teachers’ Association (PPTA) senior vice president died at Christchurch Hospital surrounded by family and friends – Christchurch Press

Professor Masaud Jahromi, of Ahlia University in Bahrain, recently had his Bahraini citizenship revoked. He was arrested in April of 2011, after reportedly participating in a peaceful pro-democracy protest. After serving four months in prison he resumed his position at Ahlia University. However, on January 31, Professor Jahromi learned through media reports that he, along with 71 other individuals, had his Bahraini citizenship revoked by the Ministry of Interior – Scholars at Risk

British universities are planning to ban students from wearing anything on their wrists during examinations, for fear they may use smart watches to access the internet and cheat – Sky News

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