Starting Sunday: strike of senior academic staff in universities

Starting Sunday: strike of senior academic staff in universities
Starting Sunday: strike of senior academic staff in universities

The Coordinating Council of the Organizations of the Senior Academic Staff announced today (Thursday) the suspension of classes starting this coming Sunday – at the Hebrew Universities, Tel Aviv, Ben-Gurion, Haifa, the Technion, Bar-Ilan and the Weizmann Institute. Ariel University and Reichman University did not join the strike.

According to them, the board of heads of the universities, together with the Ministry of Finance and the Council for Higher Education, did not accept their demand to correct the erosion in their salary, which has not changed since the previous salary agreement ended.

Prof. Anat Zaira, the chairman of the coordinating council of the academic staff organizations in the universities, explains: “Our collective agreement ended at the end of 2019, and since then the lecturers’ salary has been significantly reduced. Despite our requests to renew the agreement, we had to wait a long time for negotiations to start. For more than a year and a half, we have been negotiating to renew the salary agreement, but even though we come to the negotiations with an open heart and a willing mind and offer solutions – it seems that the other side, and especially the committee of heads of universities, Delays time, holds idle discussions, fortifies his position and is not really interested in reaching an agreement.”

“Higher education is the growth engine of the economy, it is appropriate for the state to allocate the appropriate resources.” Ministry of Finance, archive | Photo: Jonathan Sindel, Flash 90

“Higher education is the growth engine of the Israeli economy, and the measures may harm the proven successes of the Israeli academy,” said Prof. Zaira. “It is proper for the State of Israel to allocate the appropriate resources to the faculty members as well – after having found it appropriate to allocate them to other sectors”

“We are not asking for an addition to the salary base, but only a correction of our salary in accordance with the erosion that the salary has already suffered and will continue to suffer. For a long time we avoided taking organizational measures out of a good will to reach understandings, but unfortunately – we came to know that only the use of organizational measures could lead to progress in the negotiations. We didn’t want this, but the ongoing conduct of the university administrations with the encouragement of the state authorities simply leaves us no other choice,” Prof. Zaira concluded.

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