Otago University staff to strike tomorrow.

Te Hautū Kahurangi | Tertiary Education Union’s campaign for a real pay rise in the university sector continues tomorrow, when approximately 1,000 union members at Te Whare Wānanga o Ōtākou | The University of Otago will strike for two hours from 12:30 until 2:30pm.

Kaiwhakahaere | branch organiser Phil Edwards says “while we were disappointed not to be able to rally last week due to snow in Dunedin, we always knew this campaign was not a ‘one-hit-wonder’ and there would be further opportunities for our members to make their voices heard.”

“University of Otago staff have been struggling with the rapidly rising cost of living, on top of the stress and demands of COVID and recent low pay settlements, just like our colleagues up and down Aotearoa.”

“It’s time for our employer and the government to listen.”

Last week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern weighed in on the TEU strikes, saying “this is obviously something the universities are dealing directly with their unions on. We have increased the subsidy rate from central government in order to support universities with their additional costs, but ultimately when it comes to negotiations of this nature it is up to the two parties.”

Te Pou Ahurei | National Secretary of the TEU Sandra Grey says this response is not good enough. “We have been repeatedly seeking tripartite talks between the minister, the universities and our union to talk about the underinvestment in people throughout our sector. It is a matter for the government when a sector they carry the ultimate responsibility and oversight for is not treating its people well.”

Members will meet for a rally at the University Union Lawn at University of Otago’s main campus at 12:30 tomorrow.

Media contact
Enzo Giordani
+64 21 221 4910