University in the firing line again

Lecturer’s redundancy ‘unjustified’ – ERA – 29 Apr 2008 – NZ Herald: New Zealand National news

Auckland University and their employment practices are again in the firing line from the Employment Relations Authority this time for sacking a lecturer who specialises in Maori and Pacific Island art history.

The authority ruled that Vice-Chancellor Professor Stuart McCutcheon had failed to act in good faith towards lecturer Dr Rangihiroa Panoho when dismissing him on the basis of redundancy.

It ruled the redundancy was not justified and pointed out the university was in Auckland – the largest Polynesian city in the world.

The authority’s decision also said that Professor McCutcheon failed to act as a good employer and that Dr Panoho was treated neither fairly nor sensitively.

Worse the authority concluded that the witnesses for the Vice-Chancellor were “unhelpful, if not deliberately vague” recalling important matters.

This is the second time in as many months that the University has been slammed by the ERA.

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  • mattb02

    It ruled the redundancy was not justified and pointed out the university was in Auckland – the largest Polynesian city in the world.

    I don’t like that argument at all. It sounds like the ERA is telling the university how to run its business, which could get very ugly very quickly. I am reminded of the Environment Court’s decision to disallow Ikea going into Mt Wellington out of traffic concerns. In both cases it seems to me decisions are being made in areas each authority is completely unqualified to speak on. Without some kind of boundary on what these bodies are able to rule on, it will not be long before these bodies will be walking all over the rights of citizens in all kinds of ways.

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