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Your views: on Adelaide Uni, Centrelink and aged care lockdown

Reader contributions

Today, readers comment on the University of Adelaide, JobSeeker payments and aged care during coronavirus.

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Commenting on the story: Uni insists finances sound after leaders’ abrupt departure

For most of the last month I’ve been part of a small band of Adelaide Uni students coming to the North Terrace campus to study each day. This number has grown from what seemed like only fifteen three weeks ago to probably around one hundred in last few days. 

We all have different reasons coming here, I’m sure; better internet, it’s quieter than home, a break from cramped student accommodation. Even just for the solidarity of it and trying to bring a sense of tangibility to the otherwise virtual, online and somewhat imaginary manner in which our classes are being conducted. 

To be clear, this online delivery mode is not an acceptable alternative but an unavoidably necessary substitute for normal engagement. Not a great one but still a marvel of technology. We’re lucky to have a way to keep studying which wouldn’t have been possible twenty years ago.

People are mostly bearing up, showing patience and adaptability. Some days go pretty well and other days not so much. It’s just that those experiences tend to disappear into silence and invisibility. And despite the sympathetic policies and rescue packages it feels  like there’s a pressure to accept accept this new normality and submit to academic assessment in return for our much needed fees.

Maybe that’s just my own imperilled mental health speaking. There are many would-be students who can’t be here, or who have been separated from family. Reachers and other staff have been stood down and small businesses symbiotic with the uni are shuttered. 

This is why the corporate machinations at the big end of the university’s governance this week are all the more appalling. 

In terms of our governance right now, there is nothing more urgent than the need for transparent and honourable leadership and reassurance. 

For the thousands of students, teachers, employees and affiliates who make the university exist, it should surely be run in a more open and accountable manner as the institution it claims to be, rather than as a prosaic business. – Felix Davis

I write in regard to enrolments at Adelaide University. Since arriving here in 1974 I’ve had the pleasure of working as laboratory assistant at (Adelaide schools and colleges).

Many ex students like to keep in touch with me, maybe it’s my coffee. Without exception, they have all made the same comments.

The lecturers are rarely available for help and 90% of their work is down to reading and research, which can be more easily done online or at home.

This is certainly different to my experience at Keele in UK.

Maybe it’s time to rethink how Adelaide Uni does it’s job? Sandra Bounds.

Commenting on the story: Don’t return to $40 a day JobSeeker after pandemic: poll

For the last few years I’ve volunteered and worked at a local crisis care organisation, specifically around food insecurity and food rescue although the organisation dealt with the various other high demand enquiries relevant such as housing and homelessness. 

It is truly amazing that we have allowed a system to be classified as a safety net when realistically it falls so short of that. 

Each year as the situation worsens the financial amount has stayed static. Every time it comes up it’s hijacked by rhetoric and agendas that fail to understand even the basics. 

I’ve seen it in action where our federal members ignore those at the coalface who have data, together with real world stories. 

I knew the second that individuals were going to be placed in a position where it was essential due to COVID-19 to receive benefits that they would need to increase the amount.

How can they honestly expect us to swallow therefore that they believed people could find a way to survive and support themselves on $540 a fortnight. – Christine Freeman

Commenting on the story: Lockdown ‘within the law’, SA aged care operator told

As a relative of someone who works in admin in an aged care facility, the demands of residents’ family is putting a toll on them.

As an industry which is already stretched they now have reception staff expected so check in the visitor, take details, escort them to the visiting room and then ensure the room is cleaned prior to the next person.

In an 80 bed facility for example that could be up to 160 visitors a day, let alone the phone calls from residents family who prior to the lockdown in a lot of cases had no interest in seeing said family members.

Visitors are becoming very rude and aggressive  to the lowest paid people in the facility.

Perhaps some extra funding to cover additional staff at this time. There are certainly enough people needing work. – Sabina Hannan

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