Invermay staff have approved a motion of no confidence in
the leadership of AgResearch.
Public Service Association (PSA) members at Invermay voted
unanimously against the AgResearch board and management at a
meeting this month, sources told the Otago Daily Times.
PSA assistant secretary Jeff Osborne told the ODT yesterday
the association's Invermay membership of about 60 met about
three weeks ago.
Concerns raised at the meeting were passed on to AgResearch
chief executive Tom Richardson, he said.
While several motions were discussed at the meeting, Mr
Osborne would not be drawn on their specifics.
Dunedin North MP Dr David Clark said the motion approved
showed the anxiety staff at Invermay felt about AgResearch's
original plan to slash 75 jobs at the agricultural research
''It gives a clear indication of discontent,'' he said.
''It says that the staff have lost faith in the management.''
Meanwhile, an announcement on Invermay's future is expected
Mr Osborne said staff remained concerned at the lack of
communication and consultation on the proposed changes.
''They really want to find ways to have their voices heard,''
PSA members at Invermay intended to meet again in coming
weeks to detail proposals to take to AgResearch management,
A spokesman for AgResearch did not respond to questions from
the ODT about the vote of no confidence.
He said the organisation was ''having ongoing and
constructive discussions with staff, stakeholders and PSA
''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,'' he said.
Questions about discontent among staff at Invermay, changes
to the restructuring plans and when final plans would be
announced also went unanswered.
AgResearch had no further comment to make but ''when we are
in a position to do so, we will'', he said.
A spokesman for Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce
said Mr Joyce would ''encourage the PSA to continue to
constructively engage with AgResearch on the Future Footprint
''Proposals for significant change can be unsettling for
staff involved,'' the spokesman said.
''The minister has nothing further to add ahead of any
announcements by AgResearch.''
Dr Clark said the motion provided further proof staff might
leave AgResearch if the proposed changes went ahead and Mr
Joyce needed to step in.
''The staff won't shift,'' he said.
''Some senior staff have already left the organisation.
''That is a loss to science and New Zealand's future
The ODT understands a final decision on restructuring has
been given to Mr Joyce.