Library staff protest cuts

August 5, 2011

About 50 staff and students gathered outside the University of Melbourne ERC Library on August 2 to protest ongoing cuts in the library workforce.

Corey Rabaut, an industrial officer with the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU), said 13 University of Melbourne library staff members face losing their jobs due to upgrades underway in the Baillieu and ERC libraries.

The 13 staff members were informed on June 23 that their positions would be made redundant. They will be replaced by four casual positions. Rabaut pointed out that some staff members have been employed at the University for more than 20 years.

In the last few years, the struggle between staff and corporate management of the university has taken a turn for the worse.

On one hand, there seems to be plenty of resources to build and maintain a new building for the graduate and undergraduate schools of economics, as well as upgrade the interior of the Arts department and lecture theatres.

But when it comes to providing fair and adequate employment for teaching and library staff, management insists there are no options other than to downsize.

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