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University staff union branches endorse 15 per cent wage cut

“University vice-chancellors must support the jobs protection framework because it is the best opportunity we have to protect our campuses and the livelihoods of university staff.”

The wage cut proposal has caused divisions within the union. Alma Torlakovic, a University of Sydney branch committee member, is among members planning to vote against the proposal. She said pay cuts of up to 15 per cent would be devastating for workers, particularly those with families on single incomes.

The union will also launch a national day of action on Thursday to lobby the federal government to provide a relief package for universities with more than 30,000 staff members facing the loss of income.

Sydney protesters will meet at 10am at Mrs Macquarie’s Road and march to Liberal Party headquarters on William Street in East Sydney.

The sector estimates it will lose up to $4.6 billion this year because of the coronavirus, which has caused lucrative international student enrolments to plummet, but no university is eligible for the federal government’s JobKeeper payment.

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