2SER management accused over axing of radio journalism mentor

Opponents of changes at Sydney’s community radio station 2SER have accused its university owners of bulldozing through its plan to axe the staffer who leads the station’s speech output.

2SER announced in May that restructuring would be necessary in the face of funds being frozen by joint owners of the station UTS and Macquarie University.

The station’s talks co-ordinator Mark Robinson, a twenty year veteran of the radio station who helped guide the news and current affairs programming and university journalism students, has now seen his role chopped, protestors say. The decision – which 2SER declined to confirm upon being invited to comment by Mumbrella yesterday – comes despite 70 submissions asking station management to reconsider.

Wendy Bacon, UTS professor of journalism said: “The Talks Co-ordinator has been a long-standing lynchpin for student journalism and graduate support. After many years of mutual support between 2SER and the UTS journalism program, management did not intend to inform us of the decision until after it was a fait accompli.”

Station volunteer Shan’t Fabricatorian said: “What we do know is that the loss of Mark Robinson will leave a big gap as far as volunteer training, editorial guidance and program development provisions are concerned.”

When Mumbrella spoke to 2SER MD Melanie Withnall yesterday she said she was not ready to comment. In May she said in a statement: “With the universities that fund us also working in financial constraints there has been no increase from them to meet growing operating costs at 2SER. There have been no cuts to our funding, but our income has not kept pace with expenditure we must operate responsibly within financial constraints.”


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