AgResearch chief executive Dr Tom Richardson has shot down a
request, backed by three-quarters of union members, to put
its restructuring plan on hold.
The revelation was included in a leaked Public Service
Association (PSA) report on a meeting with Dr Richardson held
The PSA asked for the meeting due to staff concerns about
AgResearch's Future Footprint Plan, which includes slashing
about 75 jobs from its Invermay campus.
The report revealed three-quarters of PSA members voted in
favour of a motion calling on AgResearch to put restructuring
on hold and improve its engagement with staff.
Dunedin North Labour MP Dr David Clark said the leaked report
showed AgResearch was continuing to ignore staff concerns and
its promise of consultation was ''farce''.
''Worse than that, it shows that they are not managing the
number one risk that they identified in their business case,
which was the retention of staff.''
It was significant that staff from across the organisation,
including Grasslands and Lincoln which are to be expanded as
part of the plan, were among those who voted on the motion.
''It's extraordinary that this level of discontent is across
all of the organisation,'' he said.
An AgResearch spokesman said it was having ''ongoing and
constructive discussions with staff, stakeholders and PSA
representatives'', but it would not be conducting them
''through the media''.
''We will continue working with our staff and partners
throughout the design and implementation phases to build
world-class science innovation hubs, ensure business
continuity, and support and retain our staff.''
The PSA report said Dr Richardson ''listened closely and
asked questions'' when listening to delegates going over
staff concerns about restructuring.
The PSA would meet its AgResearch members next month where it
would provide a ''full report'' of the meeting and discuss a
''strategy for further engagement'' with AgResearch.
The document revealed PSA was looking beyond trying to stop
AgResearch's plan and focusing on ways to find a ''win-win''
outcome for both staff and AgResearch.
''We are looking closely at the transfer support package as a
tangible and urgent area to work on,'' the report told