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"Massey Unions Ready To Move On"

At union meetings over the last week Massey union members have voted overwhelmingly to send the latest Employer offer to formal ratification meetings. Key elements of the employer offer include a 3.5% salary increase backdated to January 2002 and protection of the union collective bargaining process.

"The latest employer offer represents a significant break through for union staff because it recognises the importance of collective bargaining and the work union members put into fighting for improved salaries and conditions. Previously the employer has automatically passed on any gains won by the unions to all non-union staff. This will no longer be the case" said Combined Union Spokesperson Peter Blakey.

"Union membership will undoubtedly increase as non-union staff wake up to the fact that there are now more obvious benefits for union membership. we expect to be talking to a large number of non-union staff over the next few weeks" said Peter Blakey.

"The salary offer at 3.5% for twelve months is still considered inadequate by a large number of our members. It won't address the growing international disparities between New Zealand academic staff salaries and those paid in other countries. Nor does it adequately address the erosion of university staff salaries suffered over the last decade. In voting to take the offer to ratification it was important to note the Employer's undertaking to set up taskforces focussed on achieving more competitive salaries for all University Staff" said Jan McPherson

"Negotiations resume again in September with a different Vice Chancellor. A number of the agreements from this year's negotiations have the potential to set the ground work for improved relations between the Employer and the Unions. We look forward to working with them to re-establish a relationship built on trust" said Jan McPherson


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