NTEU divides on deal at La Trobe U

La Trobe U wants staff to endorse the cuts-for-jobs framework previously proposed for all unis. Union members are divided

Vice Chancellor John Dewar was one of four VCs that negotiated the now dropped national deal and is still keen to see LT U staff support it, “to ensure we can protect as many La Trobe jobs as possible,” (CMM May 29). The national plan was for a vote of all union members, before all staff at each university voted on individual versions.

This is still happening at La Trobe U – but there is a problem for university management – the campus branch of the union is split. The branch leadership backs the accord and will put it to an all member vote Thursday-Saturday. However, a meeting of members has already voted against it, narrowly, on the substantive motion.

An all-union member yes will be a good sign for the LT U-wide vote, which the university is committed to occurring, whatever the comrades decide. But defeat will be a loss for the local NTEU leadership and a risk to the  deal Professor Dewar wants.