University of Auckland loses unpaid work

Posted By TEU on Nov 3, 2016 |

Tertiary Update Vol 19 No 38

TEU academic member Siouxsie Wiles is apologising to students and others who do not get her normal prompt response today, saying she is not doing free work this month.

People working at the University of Auckland are taking strike action this month, by doing none of the usual extra working hours that keep the university running smoothly.

Wiles says she is taking action to support the lowest paid people at the university.

“The vice-chancellor is not prepared to negotiate a Living Wage and a flat rate pay increase that most benefits our lowest paid staff. As an academic, I automatically progress up the pay scale most years. What I was appalled to find out is that professional staff, such as the technicians who are so crucial to my research group, do not. In many cases this means that their wages are not keeping up with inflation,” says Wiles.

Union members are making three claims in support of fair pay – the Living Wage, a flat rate pay rise that lifts pay for people paid the lowest at the same rate as everyone else, an end to performance pay for people working as professional staff.

At the most recent negotiations, the university offered a pay increase that is lower than the increases negotiated at most other universities and it made no offer on ending performance pay or improving the pay of the university’s lowest paid staff.

The strike action is scheduled to continue until the end of the month unless there is a successful outcome from collective agreement negotiations.

Also in Tertiary Update this week:

  1. Lincoln loses leader in Ekara Lewis
  2. Government taking too long on equal pay principles
  3. Union members win more pay rises
  4. Government finds 10,000 student debtors in Aussie

Other news

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Fitlink student Melissa Beckett fears her personal training qualification, which has cost her $3,000 and is not yet complete, could be in jeopardy as the company offering the course seems to be in turmoil. – Stuff

Amid concerns about the growing use – and abuse – of quantitative measures in universities, a major new review examines the role of metrics in the assessment of research – Times Higher Education

Steven Joyce and Hekia Parata say that their shared work on Vocational Pathways, Trades Academies and Youth Guarantee Partnerships is successfully increasing the retention of young people at risk of disengaging from education, and raising their achievement – Hekia Parata

As college attendance has risen and investment in public institutions has flagged, the United States has relied increasingly on for-profit colleges, with disastrous consequences for many students – New York Times

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