Stand-off at Charles Sturt U

Charles Sturt U management is upping the pressure on the campus branch of the National Tertiary Education Union to settle on a new agreement. On Friday DVC Toni Downes emailed all staff, spelling out the university’s pay offer and making it plain that two $500 payments are added to salary, and not as some assumed, one-off bonuses. She added management hopes to reach an agreement at tomorrow’s meeting.  However the union’s view is that there is much more than money involved and that management is holding out on issues including continuing caps on academic workloads and no forced redundacies.

CSU observers say management wants to keep the focus on money in case it decides to put its offer to a staff vote without union agreement. This worked in September 2013 when the union representing some support staff backed the university’s offer  and the NTEU opposed it.  The union is certainly preparing for management to do this again.  Late Friday NTEU branch president David Ritchie wrote to staff, listing unsettled issues and warning, “take it or leave it is not a negotiation.

“We ask all staff to be cautious should management try a similar approach, which would block the work of your colleagues to secure a good quality outcome for everyone.”



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