NTEU Queensland Division Secretary Michael McNally, is concerned with the lack of staff consultations in the JCU redundancies.
NTEU Queensland Division Secretary Michael McNally, is concerned with the lack of staff consultations in the JCU redundancies.

Union blasts JCU over job cuts

THE National Tertiary Union has finally responded to James Cook University's plans to axe 13 positions from Cairns, saying it is "wrong move."

JCU will make a total 29 positions across Cairns and Townsville redundant, as it tries to save $13 millions in savings.

It will also no longer teach undergraduate courses in Cairns in psychology, sports and exercise science, exercise physiology, and joint degrees.

The university's finalised restructure plans were announced about midday on Friday.

NTEU Queensland secretary Michael McNally said it was good the union was able to force management to carry out further consultation about the cuts, but the decision to proceed with so many redundancies in the face of overwhelming feedback from staff and students was the wrong move.

"It is shortsighted to say the least, and has a negative impact on the staff made redundant, their families and the community," he said.

He said it was clear from the plan that much of work would be reassigned to existing staff.

"We are worried about the workloads of the remaining staff," he said.

"For example, in Economics and Marketing, the plan says there are eight PhD students who may need to be provided with alternative supervisors - that's a lot of work to be redistributed.

"The university recorded a small deficit in 2017.

"This is not the way to fix their financial problems - staff account for less than 53 per cent of expenditure, which is very low,

"Where is all the money the university squirrelled away in the good times of multimillion-dollar surpluses?"


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