TAFE NSW workers are rallying in Newcastle over the loss of 678 frontline jobs and the sale of the Scone campus.
"The sale of the Scone TAFE is the latest in the Berejiklian Government's fire sale of state assets which will leave regional NSW worse off," CPSU NSW general secretary Stewart Little said.
"The sale of the Scone campus is incredibly shortsighted. The Hunter region has a youth unemployment rate of 18 percent but rather than investing in training opportunities the government is selling off campuses and cutting jobs."
News of the sale has come after TAFE NSW's own documents revealed 678 jobs were on the cutting block, via two restructures of student support services and facilities and management logistics. These job cuts include more than 470 jobs from regional areas, including 43 from Newcastle TAFE.
"Gladys Berejiklian and Dominic Perrottet are deliberately dismantling TAFE NSW piece-by-piece," Mr Little said. He was joined in the rally outside the Tighes Hill campus with Labor’s Shadow Minister for TAFE NSW, Jihad Dib and affected TAFE NSW workers.
"It's straight out of the privatisation playbook - under resource the system and then sell it off claiming the private market will do a better job. TAFE NSW should never be privatised."
Mr Little said the deliberate under investment in TAFE NSW was felt particularly in the regions.
"What do the people of NSW get from this gutting of critical training infrastructure? Fewer jobs and a hobbled education system. In the middle of the worst economic downturn the state has seen in a generation the Berejiklian government is closing pathways to prosperity."