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University staff union concerned at Otago fee rise

9 November 2005

University staff union concerned at Otago fee rise

The Otago Branch of the Association of University Staff (AUS) expressed concern today at the 5 percent fee increases facing Otago University students next year.

Branch President Shane Montague-Gallagher said it appears that the University was in a no-win situation with fee increases. "With rising costs for the University exceeding any increases in government funding, it seems the Council had little choice but to raise fees in this instance."

"A significant reduction in income in real terms for the University could compromise standards", said Mr Montague-Gallagher. "There are serious issues confronting the University in terms infrastructure, and salaries are still at a level where it can be difficult to attract new staff."

"Through years of inadequate salary increases and increasing student fees, both staff and students have borne the brunt of under-funding for too long," said Mr Montague-Gallagher.

"We hope the University Tripartite Forum, established as a result of the recent industrial unrest on most university campuses, and which involves unions, vice-chancellors and government representatives, will come up with some real solutions that will serve the sector long-term, said Mr Montague-Gallagher.

ENDS

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