||Issue No. 255||11 March 2005|
A Skillful Ruse
Workplace: Dirt Cheap
Industrial: Daddy Doesn’t Live With Us Anymore
Economics: Who's Afraid of the BCA?
International: From the Wreckage
Politics: Infrastructure Blues
History: Meat and Three Veg
Savings: Super Seduction
Politics: Popping the 'E-Word'
Poetry: To Know Somebody
Review: Off the Rails
The Locker Room
Banks Are Great
Uni Rolled on Casuals
Casual librarians have deleted a management plan that saw 15 of their colleagues lose their jobs and would have seen the rest sacked within a year of beginning work.
The Australian Industrial Relations Commission threw the book at University of New South Wales library management, who have been forced to retreat from the policy.
The uni had brought in the new rule to dodge unfair dismissal laws.
The move by library management flared into a dispute with members of the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) campaigning against the breach of their workplace agreement.
The NTEU labelled the librarians as "courageous" for taking a stand.
The 15 sacked casuals must now be reinstated to their positions in the library.
Legal action by the NTEU secured interim orders from the Commission forcing the policy U-turn.
The NTEU hailed the decision as an "overwhelming endorsement of the consultative provisions of the Enterprise Agreement, and the rights of NTEU members to be involved in workplace change"
"While there remain issues to be resolved, we're pleased that such an outrageous policy has been overturned," says NTEU NSW secretary Chris Game. "The decision serves as a reminder to what awaits Australian workers if the proposals of the Howard government such as removal of unfair dismissal rights for small business employees.
"If a supposedly reputable employer such as UNSW is trying to avoid unfair dismissal legislation imagine the lengths to which some unscrupulous private sector operators in other industries might go."
As well as reinstating the sacked casuals, UNSW must provide information on casual General Staff and their employment policies in the Library to the NTEU.
More Indigenous But Less at Uni
Meanwhile the NTEU has released new research showing that there was been a 15% decline in Indigenous students commencing higher education.
"Since 2000, the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous participation has begun to widen, despite the fact that the growth in Indigenous population has been almost twice that of the non-Indigenous population and has a much higher density in the age groups most likely to attend university", said Joel Wright, NTEU Indigenous Officer.
The NTEU believes that the provision of an Indigenous specific support scheme is crucial to increasing Indigenous participation and outcomes in higher education.
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