The Abbott government is planning on carving 12,000 jobs out of the Australian Public Service, and unfortunately that means around 1400 CSIRO staffers are facing the chop, in what appears to be an ongoing crusade against science in Australia.
Update: The CSIRO is disputing the numbers reported.
It’s called a “jobs freeze”, and it sees the Coalition enforce a ban on the hiring of new workers into the public sector, and slashing the amount of non-permanent or “non-ongoing” workers currently employed by government agencies.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the CSIRO will lose 990 term workers and an additional 440 casual staff, taking its 6500-person headcount down to 5070. Lobbyists have raised concerns that the axe is falling disproportionately hard on scientists in this case.
The slashing of national scientific resources comes after a slew of decisions by the new Abbott government that could be considered as harmful to the local knowledge economy.
At the announcement of the new Cabinet, it was revealed that Australia would have no dedicated Science Minister.
Following that, the environmental advisory body, the Climate Commission was scrapped. It has since relaunched as a crowdfunded industry body.
The government then confirmed that it wouldn’t be sending our Environment Minister or any stand-ins to a recent global climate summit in Warsaw.
Call us crazy, but we think that a nation hoping to develop a knowledge economy alongside an economy that specialises in pulling things out of the ground can’t afford to lose 1400 staffers from the peak booklearnin’ body in the nation after the consistent blows already sustained. [SMH]