University of Sydney statement about industrial action on campus

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The University of Sydney will remain open and operational during the NTEU’s 24-hour strike on Wednesday 17 August, with staff who can work remotely encouraged to do so.

On Wednesday 17 August, some National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) members will be participating in a 24-hour strike. The University of Sydney issued a statement in response this morning:

“The University is open and operating today.

“The safety and wellbeing of our community is always our first priority. To minimise disruption, we have recommended that staff work remotely if they are able to do so. This includes academic staff who are able to switch their classes to online delivery.

“We’ve advised our community to prioritise their safety. If they do come to campus and are prevented from entering or leaving, they should withdraw from the situation. Our Protective Services team is available at all times to provide support to anybody who feels unsafe.

“We fully support the right of our staff to strike and protest but are disappointed the union has decided to continue with industrial action. As we’ve maintained throughout enterprise bargaining negotiations, industrial action won’t help us reach agreement because we’re committed to good-faith negotiations.

“We are determined that our collective working conditions continue to be the best in Australia. Since negotiations began, we have engaged with the extensive logs of claim put forward by staff unions. We have come to in-principle agreement in a number of areas, including improved flexible working clauses, enhanced professional staff workload clauses, provisions to provide better support for and recognition of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander colleagues and enhanced leave provisions.

“We are keen to reach a mutually acceptable agreement as soon as possible. This will only be achieved through genuine engagement at the bargaining table.

“We will continue to engage in good faith to work through and resolve outstanding matters. As ever, we remain committed to reaching an Agreement that maintains and enhances our sector-leading conditions and supports excellence in both teaching and research.”

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