Media Statement: Enterprise bargaining and industrial action

Please attribute this statement to University of Newcastle Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Kent Anderson:

“Our University will be open and operating on Wednesday 21 September. Our priority is to minimise any impact on students and their education during the NTEU’s 24-hr industrial action. We expect that most classes will continue as normal for students on Wednesday and course coordinators will inform students if there are any changes.

Our academic and professional staff are outstanding – they are national and global leaders in their fields. We are committed to reaching agreements that will maintain and enhance working conditions for staff, support excellence in our education programs, research efforts and student experience.

Our current offer at the negotiating table is:

  • A total of 6% pay rise over a proposed two years (paid in October 2022 and October 2023). The proposed pay increase follows annual pay rises under the previous Agreements in October 2019; October 2020 and October 2021.
  • Three additional paid leave days for an Easter shutdown, in addition to the existing six paid leave days during the three-week end-of-year shutdown.
  • 10 days of paid ‘Life Leave’ every year which can be used for any life events
  • Increase in superannuation for casuals from 10.5% to 17%
  • A new conversion process for academic casual staff to more secure employment
  • A one-off cash payment for all staff

If our proposed offer is accepted, staff will be entitled to a total of 20 days paid annual leave and 9 paid University concession days – a total of almost six weeks of paid leave per year.

If our proposed offer is accepted, staff would also be entitled to access 10 days of paid Life Leave and 15 days paid personal/carers leave if needed.

17% superannuation in the higher education sector is one of the most generous arrangements in the country and we hope our negotiations see this level extended to casuals.

Our offer to the NTEU, CPSU and staff representatives strengthens benefits and conditions while securing the future of our University for the long-term.

We believe enterprise agreement negotiations are close to finality. We are keen to reach a mutually acceptable outcome as soon as possible. This can only be achieved through genuine and good faith negotiations at the bargaining table.”

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.

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