After bearing the brunt of underfunding for over five years,Northtec academic staff are saying no more.

Members of Te Hautū Kahurangi | New Zealand Tertiary Education Union votedyesterday to begin a strike ballot next week over what they saw as a disrespectfulsalary offer from their employer.

Organiser, Jill Jones, says the staff who teach everything from the trades tohospitality, literacy to accounting, just want their employer to show them somerespect.

“Teaching staff in Tai Tokerau are some of the lowest paid in the country. Thishas a negative impact on them and their families, but also the broadercommunity.”

 “In this week’s meeting, staff spoke about the fact that they can getbetter money back in their primary professions such as a being a mechanic,nurse, or business manager in a company. Staff have stayed because they knowthe transformational power of education and want to help students, theirfamilies, and communities.”
But goodwill is wearing thin.

As well as stepping up around salaries, staff at Northtec want their employerto work with them to challenge the government on the funding model which hasseen constant restructuring, low wages, and cuts to courses for students overthe last decade.

Northtec staff will take part in a national day of action on 20 November topress home the need for both their employer and the government to step uparound the funding to the sector.

Jill Jones, TEU Organiser, +64 27 442 4809