4 Jul 2018

University of Auckland responds to 'silencing' claims in Music

From Upbeat, 3:55 pm on 4 July 2018

Accusations the University of Auckland has been “silencing” music staff have been called “untrue”.

Last week the Tertiary Education Union accused the University of Auckland of “silencing” music staff in a letter addressed to Vice Chancellor Professor Stuart McCutcheon.

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Professor Stuart McCutcheon Photo: VNP / Phil Smith

This comes after a restructure of the university’s School of Music which has resulted in redundancies and redeployments, to take effect at the end of the academic year.

READ: Union accuse Auckland University of “silencing” music staff

Among confirmed redundancies are Professor Uwe Grodd, cello lecturer Edith Salzmann and musicologist Peter Watts.

Peter Watts

Peter Watts Photo: Facebook - Peter Watts

Responding to the Union’s allegations quoted by RNZ Concert’s Upbeat, the University says the accusations of silencing staff are completely “untrue”.

Communications Manager Lisa Finucane says “All the Vice-Chancellor has done is to require that staff comply with consultation procedures to which they have previously agreed through their employment agreements.”

Tertiary Education Union president Dr Sandra Grey

Tertiary Education Union president Dr Sandra Grey Photo: RNZ / Ian Telfer

 “The Vice-Chancellor received a letter from TEU President Sandra Grey and is disappointed that he was not given the courtesy of replying before the letter was sent to the media,” she concludes.

Numerous requests from RNZ Concert’s Upbeat to speak with the Vice-Chancellor, the Dean of the Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries or the Head of School have been turned down.