Uni Adelaide signals savings it could ask from staff

Management estimates income will be down $100m this year and $150m next but there’s a plan

Acting vice chancellor Mike Brooks tells staff the university’s council has approved management considering options under the National Jobs Protection Framework.

That’s the accord which would allow unis to temporarily cuts staff wages and conditions in return for job protections. It was drawn up by the National Tertiary Education Union’s federal leadership and four vice chancellors. The NTEU withdrew the proposal after 20 VCs rejected it, largely over the independent over-sight of institutions’ savings it included.

“It’s important to note that the university has not locked itself into the framework – we may yet decide to opt out and pursue an alternative approach to achieving cost savings. However, at this stage, we are keen to engage with the process and understand the potential opportunities available, including the capacity of the framework to avoid or defer significant job impacts,” Professor Brooks

If it does happen, he mentions two examples of savings that would need to go to a staff vote to vary the enterprise agreement – “a generalised reduction in pay for a temporary period” or an “extended leave period over Christmas.”