ETU members at Sydney electrical contractor Fredon are preparing to take industrial action in pursuit of a new agreement after Fredon management rejected ETU member’s claims.
Negotiations started for a new agreement back in November last year and ever since this time management have been pushing to strip rights and conditions from ETU members based on non-union agreements accepted by some ETU members at other companies.
The ETU is fighting on behalf of members for an 11% pay increase to be paid over the life of a three-year agreement plus improvements to some agreement clauses, but management are refusing to budge saying that the company has to have “a code compliant” agreement despite the construction code not even being law and unlikely to ever become law.
Management are also pushing to strip important protections from the agreement such as apprentice rates, the labour hire clause and the delegates rights clause.
ETU construction recruitment officer Fred Barbin said that ETU members are strong and united in their pursuit of a good agreement and will take action if necessary.
“ETU members at Fredon are staunch.” said Fred.
“In the protected action ballot a vast majority of members voted in favour of taking protected industrial action which could include 24, 48 and 72 hour strikes.
“I know our blokes at Fredon are ready to take action, their fed up.
“It’s time for Fredon management to consider our claim and come to the party or risk having their workforce walk out and jobs come to a grinding halt.” Fred said.
“Some other employers may have been able to force through non-union agreements with shitty sub-standards conditions but I can guarantee it won’t be happening at Fredon.
“Management already tried this on and ETU members told them where to stick it by voting a similar agreement down.
“If management want a blue we’re ready to go but I know who I’m backing.” said Fred.
The ETU are waiting to hear back from Fredon management and the union will report back to members next week.