Budget cuts

microscopeAs a result of a heavy funding cut from the Federal Government, CSIRO is facing hundreds more job losses, site closures and big cuts to areas of research.

It’s time for CSIRO workers across Australia to come together and stand up for CSIRO and Australian science and research.

National Days of Protest

The CSIRO Staff Association has called for two days of protest on Tuesday 24 and Thursday 26 June 2014.

  • Regional sites – particularly vulnerable to budget cuts – will lead the day of protest on Tuesday 24 June.
  • Metropolitan sites in capital cities will follow with mass meetings scheduled for Thursday 26 June.

At each event members and supporters are asked to wear white lab coats to grab attention.

More information

Metropolitan Events – 26 June 

  • ACT – To be held at the Black Mountain site, from 12.30 PM. Meet on the front lawn outside the EcoSciences Building. More details here.
  • VIC – To be held at theClayton site, from 12.30 PM. Meet at the open space by Gate 5 entrance. More details here.
  • WA – To be held at the Waterford site, from 12 PM. More details here.
  • TAS – To be held at the Hobart site, from 12.30 PM. More details here.
  • NSW – To be held at the North Ryde site, from 12 PM, meet outside Julius Avenue. More details here.
  • QLD – To be held at the QCAT, from 12.30 PM. Meet on the front lawn near Evacuation Point 1. More details here.
  • SA –  To be held at Adelaide’s Waite Laboratory. Meet 12.30pm main seminar room. Kintore Avenue meet at 12.30pm in the south meeting room.

Here is a selection of media from Thursday’s metro meetings.

CSIRO scientists don lab coats to protest against budget cuts – CPSU quoted
Hundreds of CSIRO staff have gathered at sites around Australia to protest against budget cuts they say are putting Australian science in danger – Canberra Times, weblink

Scientists protest CSIRO cuts
Scientists have rallied at CSIRO sites in Canberra and across the country to protest funding cuts to the organisation – ABC Canberra, video

Sydney scientists protest CSIRO cuts
Funding cuts to the CSIRO are driven by “pure ignorance” and will result in significant damage to Australia’s economy, the organisation’s staff body has claimed – SBS, weblink.

Australian scientists take to the streets to protest job cuts 
Abandoning their usual reserve, nearly 1000 scientists across the country downed instruments and grabbed placards this week to protest pending job losses at the nation’s leading research organisation the CSIRO – Science Magazine, weblink

CSIRO scientists protest ‘unprecedented’ job cuts
The protesters dressed in long lab coats. Their signs were scrawled with science puns. And they laughed while gathering for a group photo. “We’re rubbish at this,” one said teasingly – The Age, weblink

CSIRO funding cuts driven by ‘pure ignorance’, says staff association
Funding cuts to the CSIRO are driven by “pure ignorance” and will result in significant damage to Australia’s economy, the organisation’s staff body has claimed – The Guardian, weblink.

Regional Events – 24 June 

Events were held at the following locations:

  • Alice Springs (NT)
  • Armidale (NSW)
  • Atherton (QLD)
  • Brisbane – St Lucia / Dutton Park (QLD)
  • Geelong (VIC)
  • Griffith (NSW)
  • Geraldton (WA)
  • Myall Vale (NSW)
  • Narrabri (NSW)
  • Newcastle (NSW)
  • Townsville (QLD)

Check out some photos from these events below and related media coverage.

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Newcastle CSIRO staff protest federal budget cuts
Wearing lab coats and armed with signs about 80 CSIRO staff gathered outside Newcastle’s energy centre on Tuesdayto protest “a blow to science research” – Newcastle Herald, weblink

CSIRO staff rally in Newcastle over Federal budget cuts
Some of Australia’s top scientists have rallied this afternoon in Newcastle over what they say is a CSIRO jobs crisis, stemming from Federal Government budget cuts –ABC Online, weblink

CSIRO Staff Association reiterates calls for Riverina MP to act on lab closure
“We want to see the National Party grow some spine in relation to this and come out and fight for this laboratory,” Paul Girdler said – ABC Riverina, weblink

Riverina MP says Griffith CSIRO lab closure has been ‘reached and made’
“Unfortunately at this stage, it looks like the decision will stay,” he said. “And despite my lobbying, despite my advocacy and look, I share the pain of the staff of CSIRO who have done good work over many decades – ABC Riverina,weblink

CSIRO staff protest federal budget science cuts in Geelong
About 160 scientists have protested in Geelong as part of nation-wide demonstrations against cuts to the CSIRO in the federal budget – ABC Online, weblink

CSIRO staff protest against job cuts
CSIRO staff are protesting in seven regional centres across Australia today, with fears some offices could be closed down – ABC Rural, weblink

CSIRO staff at Newcastle Energy Centre to protest over budget cuts
Staff at the CSIRO’s Energy Research Centre in Newcastle will hold a protest meeting this afternoon to raise concerns about looming job losses as a result of Federal Government budget cuts – ABC Online, weblink

CSIRO staff organise protests across Australia
“It’s no exaggeration to say that CSIRO faces a jobs crisis – we could be looking at the largest reduction in staffing at CSIRO in the organisation’s history,” The Staff Association’s Dr Michael Borgas said – Faifax Media, weblink

Science CSIRO Staff Protest Over Federal Budget Job Cuts 
The 2014 Federal Budget was harsh on plenty of Australians, but science took an especially rough beating. Beyond new funding for medical research, Aussie scientists have had $150 million cut from their bottom lines, and $115 million is being stripped from CSIRO. Workers from the country’s peak science research organisation are protesting the cuts, holding meetings to express their displeasure – Gizmodo, weblink

CSIRO staff to hold protest meetings over job cuts
Staff at the CSIRO intend to hold nationwide protest meetings today and Thursday over large-scale job cuts forced upon it by the government – IT News, weblink

Angry scientists to protest ‘savage’ Federal Budget job cuts
Scientists in Hobart will hold a day of protest next week to demonstrate against the “savage” job cuts forced on the organisation by the Federal Budget – Hobart Mercury, weblink

Scientists to lose jobs at CSIRO in Geelong
AAHL scientists are recognised world leaders in the fight against infectious diseases that pass between animals and humans — such as recent Hendra, avian and swine flu outbreaks — and play a vital role protecting the general public as well as the multi-billion-dollar livestock and aquaculture industries – Geelong Advertiser, weblink

7 thoughts on “Budget cuts

  1. Hello,
    The word ‘mourning’ in the AAHL poster is defeatist and betrays lack of confidence in
    achieving anything. One can either protest (by the way, this is best done at the appropriate
    time, i.e. when the CEO made _her_ announcement, long before the budget!!!)
    or mourn, humbly acknowledging and augmenting the higher power of a few individuals.
    As this point, the logical response from the management and government can only be:
    “Our sincere condolences!”

    ALTERNATIVELY: take the joke to the extreme by hiring a hearse, employing ten+
    actors (even amateurs will do) to lie down in it, one for each dead science, plus wailing,
    red-eyed mourners, wreaths, press & TV etc etc.

    If it wasn’t done properly and at the appropriate time, at least let’s have a laugh!

    Anything lukewarm in between will have zero impact.

    Another disappointing aspect is that these protests (or should I say acknowledgements)
    have not been announced to ALL staff. Why not? Is there a law against it?
    Again, the Association seems afraid of being in the limelight, but little will be achieved by
    staying out of the heat or relying on help from paying members alone.

    Regards,
    Fanel Donea

  2. Mr Abbott – science creates life, science bought you and your family to Australia, science saves lives, science advances a country, science is important

  3. Its hard to be a clever country by killing off research jobs.
    Tones & Ho, research is essential to the future of so many facets of Australian life, and we mustn’t rely so much on private industry to dictate how and where research funding is spent!

  4. Dumb cuts of our smart future .… such a good quote. I never thought we would ever have such an idiot government in our country.
    Australia I beg you take a look at yourself. Surely we did not vote for this. I did not vote for this government but for those that did is this and the other imbecile spiteful pathetic things they have done are you happy now? Is this what you wanted this is the pits. This is pathetic. I hang my head in shame I hide my face in embarrassment. I am no longer proud to be Australian. . This is pathetic. I hang my head in shame I hide my face in embarrassment. I am no longer proud to be Australian.

  5. The CSIRO has been one of the most benifficial organisation this country can call its own.
    How can such short sighted thinking, as displayed by the Prim Minister, still exist in the Twenty First Century.
    The LNP’s decision threatens the countries future.
    There will be fewer scientist from overseas willing to come to Australia for research projects.
    Our nation in General will have to recover from the inevitable brain drain that will happen because of this policy.
    Stop the LNP and T Abbott from creating this desaster.

  6. I just wrote to the PM as follows and will let you know the reply:
    Dear PM

    I ask you, how can a government actually interested in economic future of Australia be cutting funds to the CSIRO?

    Your Industry Minister is unconvincing, ill-informed and incapable of understanding or representing the scientific needs of Australia, either now or into the future.

    I ask you to appoint a government Minister for Science who is not a scientifically illiterate idealogue immediately and invest in scientific research, including in agricultural research. If not I would like you to explain why there is no need for the current government to have a Minister for Science and in what way cuts to a world-renown organisation such as the CSIRO is good for the future of Australia?

    Yours sincerely

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