Support staff and the Defend the University campaign

The recently launched Defend the University campaign is not just about academics. DCU SIPTU Chair Ciarán McKenna outlines, in an article for the campaign website, how professional administrators, technical officers, librarians and others face new pressures and threats of outsourcing in the name of efficiency.

‘While support staff have not yet, and “yet” is the key term here, been hit by the same levels of casualisation as some areas of teaching and research in universities, the ongoing Employment Control Framework has had an effect. The moratorium on permanent positions has meant an increase in temporary contracts, which will lead over time to a preponderance of temporary contracts over permanent staff.

‘Added to that is the pernicious consequences of the ‘personal to holder’ proviso to the terms of the Haddington Road Agreement. The latter will result in the progressive segmentation of the support workforce in universities as colleagues within the same grade experience differing terms and conditions.’

The article is part of the just-launched Debates section of the website, where other contributers include Louise O’Reilly, SIPTU Education Organizer, and Mike Jennings, General Secretary of IFUT.

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