CWU T&S WEEKLY BULLETIN NO 2020 /
26 July 2020
TELSTRA BLOCKS EMAILS
All emails from our Branch have effectively been blocked by Telstra. This has been done by diverting all our emails to your JUNK box. Last week's Bulletin will be there. Even blank emails are diverted - meaning that it is highly targeted. We have complained to Telstra. Watch your JUNK mail for the moment.
POST SHUT DOWN
We (with other branches) had a telephone hook-up with Telstra this week raising the issue of a shut down. What is a shut down?
The ordinary and literal meaning is something like "Doors closed" or "No one at work". So far our National office has not taken legal action.
It is our view that if you have no leave available, then you cannot be directed to take leave during a shut down. Please contact us if you have concerns.
Forced ARL Fact Sheet
POST MOU OPPOSED BY OUR BRANCH
In regard to the Aust Post / CWU MOU decision agreed to by a majority of 4 CWU branches to 3, I voted against the agreement for the same reasons outlined by John Ellery but I also object to the attempt by Aust Post to legally bind the union as a whole to actively promote the terms of the agreement to our members.
It was in my opinion a capitulation to the bosses.
It is one thing to agree to a poor agreement from a position of weakness, which I contend was not necessarily the situation in this case if all branches had stood together to stare down Aust Post but it is entirely another thing to agree to do the bosses job for them.
It turns the union which is meant to protect the interests of its members and also those of the public in this case into a tame cat organisation. Lee Walkington T&S NSW Vice President.
POSTAL GRADING - TECHNICAL
Our sister branch in Victoria has written to Post about technical grading. We are also questioning grading in Canberra following a proposed restructure.
Grading anomaly - Parcels Facilities Technical Team leaders: As you are aware, there has been considerable discussion over a number of years relating to the disparity between Team Leader levels at the Victorian facilities.
The Dandenong Letters Centre facility runs with PTO level 7 team leaders and PTO level 5 2 I/C, as well as Subject Matter Experts at the PTO level 6.
This DLC arrangement exists as a result of the Tech Grades Review outcomes of a number of years ago, and is replicated across a number of interstate facilities.
On the other hand, the Ardeer Parcels facility , which has responsibility for 2 other sites (Melbourne Gateway and Somerton PDF) utilises PTO level 6 team leaders and an unusual designation known as "Engineering Leads" in lieu of SME's.
It appears questionable what their roles and responsibilities really are, but it appears the position is analogous to the SME role at Dandenong.
The matter has been of significant concern for a number of years, and has been constantly raised at the state level consultative committee by representatives from the Parcels area.
The Branch has advocated the anomalous situation relating to the team leaders, and despite the representations made locally, nothing has changed. In fact, it appears that we have a case of ignoring the concerns, increase the amount and complexity of parcel processing equipment, and hope the issue goes away over time. Clearly, this is not good enough.
Given the matter has been agitated considerably already at a local level, it requires proper discussion and consideration at your level. We request those discussions commence as soon as possible.
SENATE QUESTIONS - POST MONITORING STAFF
Extracts from the Sydney Morning Herald:
Post is paying for a confidential security program to protect its sensitive information amid a series of leaks that revealed the company was considering slowing letter delivery times and replacing post offices with automated kiosks.
The revelation comes from a Senate inquiry into the future of postal service, which received government permission to lower its service and save money as letter volumes plummeted because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Christine Holgate was repeatedly asked during a Senate hearing whether the company was monitoring senior staff.
Under grilling from Labor Senator Kim Carr during a Senate committee hearing on July 8, Christine Holgate was repeatedly asked whether the government-owned company was monitoring senior staff members, including by sweeping for bugs and checking phone records, after leaks to The Sydney Morning Herald.
Ms Holgate deferred her answers but in responses to questions on notice.
Post said it had "a risk-based security program - including to preserve the integrity and security of confidential and sensitive information - that takes into account best practice standards".
It said details of the program were commercial-in-confidence and that, if the details were to become public, it would hurt Australia Post.
SENATE QUESTIONS - POST PLANS
Extract from Sydney Morning Herald:
Senator Carr took aim at Post's claim of "commercial-in-confidence" to limit its answers to questions about a leaked 2018 strategic review of the company from consulting firm PwC.
The draft review included options like increasing letter delivery times, which resemble some of the temporary changes the government has made to help Australia Post through the pandemic.
Post has repeatedly said the delivery changes, which are set to last until June next year, are not permanent. In another written answer, it said while there were "conceptual similarities" between a set of recommendations in the strategic plan and some it pursued during the virus, they were not the same.
Letter volumes dropped 15 per cent in April at the first peak of the pandemic compared to the same month last year.
The number of parcels sent through Australia Post jumped 37 per cent between March and April this year.
SUPERANNUATION - ACCESS TO SUPER
From the ACTU:
The Morrison Government is again endangering the retirement prospects of ordinary Australians by extending the early access super scheme which has already ripped billions from the retirement savings of working people, especially women and young people.
The Government is also reintroducing the Liquid Asset Waiting Period for JobSeeker eligibility from 24 September. Meaning if a worker withdrew $10,000 in super to support themselves after being laid off, then they could be kicked off JobSeeker.
A single person with no dependents with $10,000 withdrawn from their super will have to wait 10 weeks before they are eligible for JobSeeker, meaning more people will be lurched into poverty.
PAID PANDEMIC LEAVE
80.8% of Australians want the Morrison Government to provide paid pandemic leave for all workers, according to a new poll conducted for the ACTU.
Paid pandemic leave - which would be in addition to any other leave entitlement, available to all working people and funded by the commonwealth - is essential to allowing workers to get tested and isolate when they need to.
The ACTU is calling for full pay for all working people while they isolate with symptoms to get tested, if they need to isolate because they have been in close contact with someone with the virus, or if they need to quarantine if infected. Such a system would be only operate while the virus is with us.
Authorised by Dan Dwyer Branch Secretary
CWU Telecommunications & Services Branch, Sydney City, NSW.