123 voluntary redundancies already accepted by CQU

THERE is still no official breakdown on how many CQUniversity staff will be affected by voluntary and forced redundancies at the Mackay campus.

National Tertiary Education Union CQU branch president Dr John Fitzsimmons said the union estimated there could be between 80 and 120 forced redundancies.

To date, 123 voluntary redundancies already had been accepted by the university, Mr Fitzsimmons said.

However, he said he wasn't sure how many staff from Mackay would be or had been affected.

"We are still trying to get a clear picture overall."

Meetings and consultation with staff would begin next week and they would know more after that, he said.

Meanwhile the Morning Bulletin in Rockhampton yesterday reported a "toxic and chaotic" environment had persisted at the university as it tried to fill its $25 million budget black hole. The university has faced criticism for a business model that left it exposed and vulnerable when international student numbers dropped.

CQU relied more heavily on international student fees than most other Australian universities and felt the impact of the downturn.

But CQU Pro-Vice-Chancellor Pierre Viljoen said staff at the Mackay campus were handling the changes with professionalism and were working hard to move beyond the challenges.

"The small number of staff from Mackay who have been granted voluntary separation packages have obviously seen this as a good chance to move on and pursue other professional or personal opportunities," he said.

"It is a challenging time for staff at the Mackay campus as we go through various changes to our work environment, but I don't think it is dissimilar to what many other businesses are experiencing in this climate."



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