CWU T&S WEEKLY BULLETIN NO 2021 /
22 August 2021
TELSTRA EBA - INTERIM PAY RISE
The EBA will not be concluded by the time of the due date of the next pay rise (1 Oct). Telstra (unilaterally) decided to increase workstream wages by 1.5% and provide a guaranteed pay pool of 1.5% for Job Family from 1 October.
In negotiations, Telstra proposed to pay an additional 0.5% as an overall flat increase to all Band 2 to 4 employees if an EBA comes into force. This additional 0.5% has not been agreed and pay increases for the 2022 and 2023 years have not yet been discussed.
COVID - YOUR RIGHTS
The current position (generally speaking) is as follows
If you are not in a job that is subject to a public health order (eg age care and quarantine hotels):
- You cannot be required to get a jab.
- You do not need to disclose your personal information.
Some employers are setting out to test the limits. The focus of the debate is moving to the question of whether the decision of the employer is a lawful and reasonable direction.
POST SPF - COVID CASE
Located in Chullora with some 800 workers is Australia's largest parcel facility (SPF). This week a staff member tested positive requiring some 60 staff to be sent for tests and isolated for 14 days. Some Technical staff were also exposed and were also sent home. This has prompted Post to change some rosters. Discussions are occurring.
Remaining staff have concerns not only about their own health but also about their family at home - some with vulnerable family members. Let us hope it does not spread further.
The ACTU met with Industrial Relations Minister Michaelia Cash and employer groups to discuss the vaccine rollout. The key focus for us was to seek agreement from employers and the government to approach the rollout in a cooperative way that treats workers with respect, rather than in a way that builds conflict.
This means that employers should not be looking to mandate vaccinations. Instead, they should recognise there are supply problems and be supporting people to make the decision.
Key ways they can do this is through providing paid time so workers aren't out of pocket and supporting easy access to the vaccine. Unfortunately, the government have not yet provided nationwide paid vaccination leave.
ACTU CONDEMNS ACCC FOR ABUSE OF POWER
The ACTU welcomes the decision by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions to withdraw criminal cartel charges against the CFMEU and its Branch Secretary Jason O'Mara.
This case was an abuse of power at every level. Disputes about industrial rights and the fight for better and fairer conditions for workers should be dealt with under Industrial law. The decision by the ACCC to use the Trade Practices Act in relation to an industrial dispute was a decision driven by political interest and nothing more.
Jason O'Mara and his family have endured years of being pursued through the courts on a baseless and unprincipled charge.
Nothing good came of the discredited and politicised Heydon Royal Commission and today is just another example of the continued efforts of some to attack unions.
PAYING MEMBERSHIP FEES
Please be patient if you receive a reminder. There is a problem collecting mail as our PO Box is in the city and our book keeper is in a lock down suburb. You can pay by phone with a credit card.
Authorised by Dan Dwyer Branch Secretary
CWU Telecommunications & Services Branch, Sydney City, NSW.