Escape from the precariat

A Labor promise for permanent employment could impact in unis

In a pitch to the precariat, Labor promises a 24-month cap on short-term employment. After four consecutive six-month contracts employers will be obliged to offer workers a permanent job. This strikes the National Tertiary Education Union as a good idea indeed for the 68 per cent of university workers the union says are either casually employed or on fixed term contracts. ““Universities have been resisting our initiatives through enterprise bargaining to limit the use of insecure employment,” national president Alison Barnes says.

While there are variations across the system theEscape from the precariat’s new enterprise agreement provides a sense of what occurs. Academics on fixed-term contracts can apply for continuing employment after five consecutive years in the same job.


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