Bargaining Meeting 37

Adapted from all member email sent 29/3/23

Two main things happened in yesterday’s bargaining session: 

  • Management were not prepared to make any compromises on the number of Education-Focussed (EF) roles, though they did make some movement on protecting the workloads for EF staff at Levels A, B and C. While this movement provided some protections, no one in the Bargaining Team believes that management’s current position on this issue, described below, is adequate.
  • Management increased their pay offer slightly, adding 1.5% in toto over the life of the agreement and shortening the Agreement by a month. This increase will now just allow them to claim that they are offering the highest percentage pay rise that we’ve seen so far in the current round of enterprise bargaining nationally.

You can read more on each issue below. The terms of the professional staff package remain unchanged. On the Indigenous employment target, we’re yet to receive a management response.

Bargaining update: Education-focussed roles

As we have reported previously, the Bargaining Team remains opposed to both the 25% cap on EFRs as a proportion of the non-casual teaching workforce that management want, and to the 70% maximum teaching allocation for these roles that they are insisting on. These are both too high. We also feel that the new workload review mechanisms which management are prepared to establish, while welcome, will not be as reliable a form of protection as workload maxima written into the agreement.

In the interest of exploring possible solutions, we asked management whether they would consider reducing the teaching allocation for more vulnerable junior staff, i.e. EFRs at levels A-C. After some back-and-forth, they said they would be willing to provide a 10 percentage point reduction in the teaching load for 2 years (this would see the standard EFR allocation as 70/20/10 – but the teaching workload required would be reduced to that of a 60% staff membe for the first two years, and they would not be required to do any extra research of service), with a possible extension via the AP&D process to 3 years, for all level A and B EFRs, and also for those level Cs who have not previously held a continuing or fixed-term teaching position of at least two years at a university. The bargaining team did not feel this went far enough to meet our concerns and resolve the clause, and we told management so. They indicated that this was as far as they were willing to go.
Bargaining update: Pay

Management are maintaining the flat $2000 payment when the agreement is signed, but they have increased the last 3 annual pay rises of the agreement (those to be paid in 2024-2026) by half a percentage point, giving us 18.2% for the life of the agreement, or an expiry-to-expiry annual pay rise of 3.7% flat and 3.98% compounded. This just, and only just, will allow them to claim that they are offering the highest percentage pay rise that we’ve seen so far in the current round of enterprise bargaining. This is obviously well below our claim of 5% or CPI + 1.5% per annum. On current CPI predictions we are still facing a cut in real wages of between 4% and 5% over the life of the agreement.

 20232024202520262022-2026Annual expiry to expiry
Old offer4.60%3.25%3.25%3.50%16.70%3.34%
New offer4.60%3.75%3.75%4.00%18.20%3.70%

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s