March 14, 2023
Hau Taki Haere | Tertiary Update Vol 27, No 4
Te Hautū Kahurangi | Tertiary Education Union members at Waipapa Taumata Rau | The University of Auckland remain hopeful that a resolution will be found for their long running dispute with the employer in the aftermath of their longest full work stoppage to date – a 23 hour strike a fortnight ago.
Morale was high for both the rallies in support of the strike – an approximately 600 strong march around the campus on Wednesday 1 March and a slightly smaller but no less vocal gathering on Symonds Street the next day that marched to the Clock Tower to mark the end of the strike.
Ahead of the strike, members and TEU staff confronted Prime Minister Chris Hipkins as he attended Clubs Day on the Old Government House lawn. Kaiwhakahaere | Organiser Nicole Wallace asked him if he was comfortable with a state sector employer utilising union busting tactics. In response the Prime Minister said he expected all public institutions to follow state sector workforce policy guidelines and he committed to follow up with the relevant Minister.
Over the course of the dispute, University of Auckland management have been using high growth in the cost-of-living to withhold a much-needed pay increase from union members unless they agree to trade away important conditions for future staff, and agree that some staff will get no pay increase if they don’t meet opaque performance criteria.
A follow up letter was promptly sent to the Prime Minister’s office, copied to Minister Tinetti and we await a response. Negotiations with the employer are set to resume today.
In related news, compulsory education unions New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) and Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA) are striking on Thursday. We hope all TEU members will show their support at their nearest rally.
Also in this update:
- Positive dialogue at rules hui
- Funding PTEs will only generate competition across our VET sector
- Life membership for Craig West
- Free webinar – Insurance confusion
Secondary and primary school teachers to strike next Thursday across New Zealand – NZ Herald
Backlash as academics warned to remain 'politically neutral' ahead of general election – Stuff
‘This is the hill we will die on’: Sydney Uni academics go on strike – Sydney Morning Herald
University of Auckland staff strike action continues over pay talks dispute – RNZ