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University Library Restructures condemned


21/06/18

A New University: Auckland University Library Restructures condemned by Students, Staff and Alumni


A New University, a group committed to the democratisation of the University of Auckland, strongly condemns the decision made by Stuart McCutcheon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Auckland, to restructure the University's Libraries and Learning Services.

The organisation composed of staff, students, and alumni, along with concerned community members. They oppose this violent restructure, which will result in the closure of specialist Creative Arts and Industries libraries, and their consolidation into an already overloaded general library. Moreover, the restructure will see the disestablishment of 112 positions, to be replaced with 96.5 new ones. This amounts to a loss of 15.5 full time roles.

The Dean of Creative Arts and Industries has announced a meeting, intending to inform students about these decision. However, this is not the end. Communities across the university will be attending to make their voices heard.

When: Thursday, 21st June, 12-12.30pm

Where: CAI Student Centre (Level 2, Architecture Building 421, reception area).

Who: Student Reps, Student Association Presidents, Diane Brand (CAI dean), Sue Roberts (Libraries and Learning Services director)

These decisions are being dictated to students and staff who are the lifeblood of the university. There has been no appropriate consultation with those who are foremost affected by the restructures. It is evident that this university management, concerned with profits and cost-cutting, has failed our wider communities. Democratic control of the university is therefore necessary.

Spokesperson for A New University, Vanessa Harvey, said “These closures were widely and actively opposed by not only students and staff within the directly affected faculties, but also students and staff from across the wider university, including the University Senate, alumni, and members of the community. It highlights the failure of the current university management and administration.”

“Stuart McCutcheon and the current University Council marginalise university voices with government appointees. The profit model of the university treats education as a business, leading to the demise of the academic environment, and the calcification of ideas.”

“A New University is advocating for, and will take strong action towards, democratic control of the university. We want the university to be an academic institute and a place of learning. This means replacing the current University Council model with a decolonised democratic model. The university should be run by students, staff, and tangata whenua as those who make the university. Only when we control our own universities will these institutions flourish. Until then we will witness them decay.”

“We call upon all those affected and the wider community to support us in demanding democratic student staff control of the university.”

ENDS

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