One thousand Auckland University staff will go on strike today to fight for an equal pay increase for all employees.
Josanne Blyth from the Tertiary Education Union (TEU) says unequal rises are hardest on those at the lower end of the pay scale.
"We're trying to make them feel valued because they put a vital contribution to university, and they should receive a more equal pay."
The university wants all staff to have 1.2 percent pay increases this year and next, but the TEU wants that plus a $3500 pay rise for those at the lower end of the pay scale, to close the gap between the lowest- and highest-paid.
She says even those in higher positions who aren't affected support the strike.
"We feel frustrated after all these months, nine months of trying to get to resolution, that we feel that we need to show our hand and say we are unhappy."
Ms Blyth says if today delivers no outcome, they're not afraid to go on strike again.
"There isn't any reason why we can't continue doing this. It's a long road and it isn't an easy road, but we will continue to ask for what we see is reasonably - which is equity and fair pay."
The strike is backed by the Auckland University Students' Association.
Staff will walk off the job at 10am, with a march and rally planned.