Staff vote no confidence in RN Manager

ABC Radio National staff last week voted a unanimous no confidence motion in Program Manager Gordon Taylor, over plans to make three features producers redundant following axing of the Listening Room.

Staff believe the axeing is a cover for budget over-runs and that the redundancy strategy is aimed to remove the specialist broadcasters’ editorial independence.

Staff representatives demanded a meeting with ABC Managing Director Russell Balding by Wednesday 10 December.

The motions passed at the meeting were:


Over recent months staff have become increasingly unsettled about the failure of the Program Manager RN to deal in an ethical, effective and timely manner with a wide range of issues regarding the management and direction of RN. As we approach the New Year many staff don’t know if they’ll have a job or what that job will be. In particular we note the following:

1. The arbitrary mismanagement of staff individually and collectively with regard to program assignments and the future of particular programs.

2. The failure to consult in any meaningful way over editorial decisions regarding the closure of TLR on FM.

3. The wilful disregard of the EPs and Content Editors in determining program staffing and editorial direction.

4. The ‘de facto’ creation of program making pools in RN with no appropriate industrial discussion or consultation.

5. The failure to fill behind long standing vacancies.

6. The failure to resolve ongoing anomalies in people’s employment circumstances.

7. Mismanagement leading to the loss of high profile presenters.

8. Inconsistencies and contradictions in management’s communication with staff leading to a loss of trust.

9. The Failure to follow appropriate advertising and selection procedures for the offer of employment opportunities.

10. The gross financial mismanagement of the network, leading to a budget overrun of $250,000 to $300,000.

Therefore this meeting of RN staff declares it no longer has any confidence in the program manager of RN.


This meeting rejects the approach of management to the issue of redundancies surrounding the closure of TLR. In particular we condemn the arbitrary creation of a limited class of program makers from which the redundancies are to be sought; and condemn the rejection by management of positive suggestion for alternative strategies to address budget targets.

If, and only if, a budgetary need can be demonstratred, this meeting calls for management to accept Expressions of Interest for voluntary redundancies across the whole network, with the caveat that we accept management has the right to reject such EOIs in individual cases.


Given the urgency of these matters, and the stated unavailability of the Director Radio and the Head of National Talk Radio, this meeting calls on the Managing Director to meet a delegation of RN staff to address these specific concerns by close of business on Tuesday 9 December.