LA TROBE University has announced another round of voluntary redundancies.
The university on Wednesday confirmed 239 staff members have already taken redundancies as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Twenty-five of those workers were from the Bendigo campus.
A La Trobe spokesperson said expressions of interest for a second round of voluntary redundancies would open on September 9.
"This round enables staff to make decisions now they have some clarity about the university's strategic direction," the spokesperson said.
"There are no set targets for this second round of voluntary redundancies."
National Tertiary Education Union La Trobe branch president Virginia Mansell Lees said staff were frustrated and worried about more job cuts.
"People are feeling like they have been duded," she said. "Many people have put many years into their careers only to be treated in a way that's pretty shabby."
Ms Mansell Lees said a large number of women took up the first round of voluntary redundancies.
"Women are in a different position," she said. "There are colleagues that are single parents and the money they would get with a voluntary redundancy would tie them over.
"Frankly the work has become labour intensive and that never gets counted. So I could see why people would take the redundancies, but that then upsets the balance between women and men."
Ms Mansell Lees said staff were told the university was expecting a 20 per cent increase in productivity next year, despite further job cuts.
"Everyone already has very full workloads," she said. "The union is putting forward a submission to the Academic Workloads Committee about this. We will be fighting this rigorously."
A La Trobe spokesperson said staff were being consulted on the productivity improvement target.
"The focus of the draft strategic plan is to do less - through focusing on our strengths - but doing it better and more efficiently through improved systems and processes," the spokesperson said.
"Part of this increased efficiency and productivity will include investment in the university's digital capability, with implementation phased over a period of time."
La Trobe Pro Vice-Chancellor (Regional) Guinever Threlkeld on Wednesday said strong regional campuses would be a focus of the university over the next 10 years.
But Ms Mansell Lees said staff were concerned the regions would be hit hardest by further redundancies.
"What they have already said is that regional campuses will have to break even," she said. "If you have very few courses, the chances to break even are limited.
"We know that they are already cutting courses. Any course that has small numbers will go, so it doesn't make sense."
Federal Member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters said the federal government could have helped avoid have avoided further job cuts at La Trobe.
"We have been calling on Scott Morrison to extend JobKeeper to universities for almost six months now," she said.
"The union, staff, university, and myself have warned the prime minister there would be more job losses if they didn't extend JobKeeper to La Trobe and other universities.
"We still haven't been given an answer as to why it hasn't been extended. There is still an opportunity for the government to do that."
Ms Chesters said she was concerned what the cuts would mean for regional campuses.
"How many jobs can you lose before a campus becomes a skeleton of its former self?" she said. "Now is the time to invest more in regional campuses.
"A core pillar to economic recovery is a well-resourced higher education sector."
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