CWU T&S WEEKLY BULLETIN NO 2021 /
05 December 2021
COMING UP IN NEXT FEW WEEKS
Some weeks we have a long bulletin with lots of issues to report. I am developing stories on
Exempt employees (no entitlement to overtime etc)
Redundancy - LSL, ARL etc may reduce your pay out significantly
Survey - what do you want from bulletins?
WE FORCE OPTUS TO CHANGE ANNUAL LEAVE POLICY
We have won this battle for our EPA covered members. It applies to members covered by the EPA. (See below).
If you are not covered by the EPA, then Optus may still not have the power to lawfully direct you to take annual leave. It will depend on your employment contract. I would need to see your contracts before giving advice.
OPTUS - DID YOU GET INFO RE CHANGED ANNUAL LEAVE POLICY?
Some managers have informed staff of the change and apologised for taking unlawful action (They were carrying out unlawful policy pressed by HR). One manager said:
Hi Team, After having discussed it with management, I'd like to clarify that there is no personal individual KPI for annual leave and that you will not need to have a leave balance of 8 days or less by the end of the financial year (March 2022). Your PDR will not be affected as a result of your individual leave balance.
I have been removing any KPI in performance forms that are not consistent with the above. If I have not yet done so and this remains in your performance form - please feel free to delete this KPI. Otherwise please raise it with me so I can action.
If any upcoming leave was booked on the basis of the prior misunderstanding, please discuss this with me and cancel it.
Sincere apologies for any confusion caused
We will start negotiations this week on a new Enterprise Agreement (EBA). Optus calls it an "Enterprise Partnership Agreement" (EPA). This will set your pay increases for the next 3 years, and will establish your terms and conditions of service. The EBA is a legally binding document. Any breach of the agreement is a breach of the Fair Work Act, and penalties apply. The nominal expiry date is 22 April 2022.
OPTUS EBA - WHAT TO DO?
First, discuss the EBA with your fellow workers. The current EBA can be found at
CWU Optus EBA
on our web page.
We want to know:
What pay rise should we seek?
What conditions should be changed?
Optus will seek to make lawful their direction to take annual leave - so your conditions can be eroded.
Please advise asap.
Your bargaining power is directly related to membership. Ask your fellow workers to join you and others to help this negotiation.
First, TPG is a large family made up of former Vodafone, IINet, AAPT, TransAct and even Telstra employees. Our records do not always reflect the changes. If you are a TPG or related employee, and I have not contacted you this week, please ring me on 0428 942 878.
Second, TPG will commence negotiations with unions and bargaining agents in January 2022. We will be representing our members in those negotiations.
Thirdly, TPG is conducting a number of meetings this week to brief staff. We will arrange to address the workshops this week to explain the union role and position. In you have any questions, please contact me on the number above.
While we have reached an impasse with MTA, we have proposed that they include a clause that MTA must consult the union each year when pay increases above the base rates are being considered.
TELSTRA SEC DISPUTE
This dispute continues as the Step 3 meetings did not result in any settlement. The matter is now destined to move to the FWC for conciliation. We have a meeting of members on 6 Dec.
POST PANDEMIC LEAVE POLICY CHANGES FOR UNVACCINATED EMPLOYEES
Australia Post has introduced controversial changes to its pandemic leave policy. Changes to the policy, which took effect on 17 November, do not change the level of benefits provided - however, employees who choose not to be vaccinated are no longer eligible to avail of those benefits. This is a move which the Union has alleged is a form of mandating vaccination at Australia Post.
Employees who are unvaccinated will no longer be able to access the benefits provided by the pandemic leave policy. Affected employees who are absent for reasons which were ordinarily covered under the pandemic leave policy must avail of personal leave, ARL, long service leave or leave without pay for any such period.
For the purpose of determining eligibility under the policy, those employees who have not disclosed their vaccination status, and those who have received a single dose but decided not to proceed with a second dose, are considered unvaccinated.
UNION SAFETY REPRESENTATIVES MAKE WORKPLACES SAFER
We all know it, but now we've got the numbers to prove it. Union workplaces are safer than non-union workplaces.
Australian Unions recently released the latest "Work Shouldn't Hurt" survey. The survey was completed by over a thousand workers across Australia's many industries and reveals the inner workings of just how safe our workplaces are.
Health and safety reps to the rescue
The survey found a positive correlation between Health and Safety Representatives (HSR's) being present and better-reported health and safety risks in the workplace.
Long story short - union safety representatives make workplaces safer.
79% of workers with an HSR present said their workplace complies with work health and safety policies, as opposed to 51% of workers with no HSR present.
AUSTRALIAN UNIONS STORE
Looking for a union shirt or cap? Or other union material? Try
Australian Unions Shop
Authorised by Dan Dwyer Branch Secretary
CWU Telecommunications & Services Branch, Sydney City, NSW.