TECHNICAL AND SERVICES BRANCH WEEKLY BULLETIN 2023
28 May 2023
TELSTRA BROADBAND FIBRE GRADING
We are seeking an upgrade for an Optical Fibre/Broadband CFW4 Tech in Melbourne. This week we refiled an application in the Court alleging an underpayment to the member. We needed to refile as the employer (Telstra Limited) changed since we started this. We allege that the member is working at the CFW 7 and CFW 5 level and must be paid as such, including backpay. The matter will move to mediation in several weeks time. We will report progress.
POST TECH - TRAVEL IN OWN VEHICLE
Members is NSW and Vic have expressed concern about the need to use their own vehicles to travel to outstations. Basically, you can be asked to temporarily work at another location. In this situation the following applies. If you have any questions or issues please contact us.
1. You can refuse to use your own vehicle to go to and from the temporary station.
2. If you travel directly from home to the temporary facility, then you are not covered by workers compensation as the boss will call it a journey claim.
3. If you travel directly from the temporary facility to home, then you are not covered by workers compensation as the boss will call it a journey claim.
4. You are covered while at work and when you travel during work times. (However insurance issues could arise with your car insurance).
5. If you are to be at the temporary facility by the usual start time, then you are entitled to overtime for the excess travel time.
6. Mileage (currently 78c/km) is to be paid for any use of your own vehicle.
OPTUS FACE PENALTIES AFTER APPEAL FAILS
In Victoria, Optus was found by the Court to have underpaid long service entitlements to certain staff. Optus was therefore facing penalties for breaching the relevant legislation. Optus appealed the decision to the Supreme Ct of Victoria seeking to overturn some matters, including the severity of the penalty. Optus failed last week and the Court will now to consider penalties.
POST SPF VACANT SHIFT POSITIONS
We have written to Normie as follows. We will advise of the response.
I am again raising the issue of filling shifts at SPF. I do this so that staff
- are not pressured to work under stress,
- are not blamed by process leaders who do not understand technical matters and
- are not pressured to cut corners and put safety at risk.
SPF has a poor OHS record in the technical area. Further the problem is exasperated because of the exodus of staff, and the replacement with new staff who are still gaining experience.
Surely we can reach an agreement that is honoured by management.
To highlight the issue we seek the following:
- A breakdown of number of staff on duty for dayshift/Maintenance at SPF and Kemps Creek for the last two months. (The maintenance and dayshift teams are running very short based on the workload.). The (famous) business has allocated a strict maintenance scheduled that is not being completed. (5am-10.45am Maintenance window sorter maintenance).
- An explanation why the 5th position when the SPS machine is running on Afternoon and Nightshift is not being filled anymore. It was agreed that the 5th person would be filled once the machine was commissioned.
POST SPF LWG THIS WEEK
Post has scheduled an LWG meeting for Tuesday. If you have any issues please contact me.
CASUAL WORKERS EARN $11.59 LESS PER HOUR
Casual workers are falling further behind their permanently employed counterparts, new research by the ACTU, shows.
Across the board, casual employees earn $11.59 less per hour than their permanent counterparts: $28.95 per hour versus $40.54. This is a pay gap of 28.6%. It has been growing steadily since 2016 and is now the highest on record.
When comparing workers at the same skill level or within the same occupation, the pay gap between casuals and permanents is between $3.55 to $3.84 an hour or about 11%. This is despite casuals being owed an additional loading of up to 25%.
New ACTU research also shows that 50% of casual workers now report being financially worse off than they were 12 months ago, up from 36% recorded a year earlier.
Up to 2.6 million workers in Australia - or just under one in four - are on casual work arrangements. Women comprise 55% of all casual employees; and the sectors with the highest rates of casualisation include retail, accommodation, food services, health care and social assistance, accounting for 55% of all casual employees.
The ACTU is calling for Morrison-era changes to the law to be scrapped, and a common-sense definition of casual work to be introduced as part of the Government's industrial relations reforms.
Too many casuals are casual in name only. Too many jobs that are actually permanent jobs have been made casual, denying workers both pay and rights. The majority of casuals work regular hours, week in, week out and have been in their job for more than a year. Changes made by the Morrison Coalition Government in early 2021 made this erosion of job security completely lawful.
OPTUS REDUNDANCIES AGAIN
Optus has advised as follows. If you have any issues please contact us.
We have made the decision to reorganise some teams, which has affected a small number of existing roles in Network Deployment, Operations & Provisioning, and Digital Networks. This change will impact 18 roles.
Information Technology (IT): In the spirit of `Simplify Experiences' to remove complexities for our customers and colleagues, we have decided to change the structure which will optimise and simplify the structure and clarify accountabilities. These changes will impact 10 roles.
These roles are spread across NSW (23), QLD (4) and Victoria (1).
Authorised by Dan Dwyer Assistant Secretary, Sue Riley Secretary
- CWU Telecommunications & Services Branches.