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AUS calls for surplus to be invested in staff

AUS WEB SITEUniversity union calls for surplus to be invested in staff
The announcement of $13.04 million operational surplus for Otago University has drawn a call from the Association of University Staff (AUS) for increased investment in staff.

AUS Otago Branch President, Mark Peters, said today that the surplus, along with a 10% increase in student enrolments, leaves the way abundantly clear for further investment in staff. He said that the 4% salary increase paid to staff in the last year did not appear to have had an adverse effect on the University’s financial performance but had been insufficient to address poor salary levels.

Mr Peters maintained that staff salaries are still well behind acceptable domestic and international comparators. “Otago needs to address its recruitment and retention problems now rather than later”, he said. “Further investment in buildings and infrastructure will be useless without core staff to teach and research”

Those staff teaching medicine and dentistry, courses which Mr Peters described as the jewels in Otago’s crown, continue to have base salary rates which are in the vicinity of $25,000 less than those doing similar work for District Health Boards.

Mr Peters said that while the AUS is pleased with the reported surplus, it raised questions over the University’s claims that it could not afford the salary increases needed to restore international salary relativities. “This surplus clearly shows that Otago University can afford to invest considerably more in its staff,” he said.

Ends

For further comment please contact
For further comment please contact:
Mark Peters, Otago Branch President, Association of University Staff
Phone: 03 479- 7613 work
021 1414276 mobile
03 476 3530 home

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