Workers most at risk of job-loss at Vic unis

Insecurely employed workers are the easiest to remove – in Victoria there are plenty to choose from

A National Tertiary Education Union analysis of Victorian university annual reports for 2019 reveal they employed 52 000 fixed-term and casual staff, on headcounts. This was 68 per cent of their total workforces.

In ascending order, the precariat accounts for 33 per cent of staff at Federation U, 63 per cent at Swinburne U, 66 per cent at RMIT and Deakin U, 68 per cent at Victoria U and 69 per cent at La Trobe U.

Monash U (11 961 and 72 per cent) and Uni Melbourne (13454 and 72 per cent) have the highest numbers, and per centage of workers whose employment is most easily ended.

Overall more women than men are exposed, 29 800 across all eight institutions, compared to 22 000 men.

It’s all pretty much the same as last year (CMM May 2 2019) – the difference now is universities need to save money. Which is a huge problem for an enormous number of people who fear for their futures, and a lesser one for continuing staff.

As Rob Castle (then DVC A at Uni Wollongong) said in 2008, “in many ways the lifestyle of the traditional teaching (and) research academic is totally dependent on the contribution of sessional staff, in the way that Victorian middle-class lifestyles were dependent on the domestic servant,” (CMM September 12 2014). People hired to teach and research will now be asked to do way more of the former than the latter.