Electrical Contracting, Service Industry and Equipment Technicians

Electrical Contracting, Service Industry and Equipment Technicians

Fuji Xerox Industrial Action

Paul Lister - Thursday, August 18, 2016

FXA members and supporters,

As you all know the negotiations with Fuji Xerox have been tough and protracted. Remember where this started – with Fuji wanting to strip away numerous conditions and pay which had been hard fought for over many years.

Let’s remember FXA’s starting position which would have taken the Agreement backwards to a pre-1996 position;

  • Slash redundancy payments down to a 52 week cap for new starters. Playing off new employees against existing.
  • Eliminating the car allowance option for new starters. Again playing off new employees against existing.
  • Slashing the car allowance for existing employees down to $12,893 and an increase in the excess km threshold before allowing claims. (Originally they proposed ending the car allowance).
  • A measly $1000 annual increase to the base.
  • No other allowance increases .
  • Introduction of satellite vehicle tracking.

Thanks to the resoluteness and collective effort of ETU members these things were taken off the table and we are now at a point where we are fighting tooth and nail just to get some sensible improvements in the Agreement;

  1. The introduction of a clause which stops FXA implementing major change without having resolved differences with a group of employees who the changes may have a severe effect on.
  2. A modest increase in wages.
  3. A little bit of flexibility from FXA on travelling time for employees being sent from one side of Sydney to the other and being expected to be there at 8:30am.

It’s not too much to ask a multinational company with over a billion dollar turnover in Australia that makes huge profits. All we want is for them to treat their employees with decency by recognising their employee role in that profit by having a fair and reasonable Agreement.

In accordance with the unanimously supported resolution of the last mass meeting held at Rosehill Bowling Club on Thursday 11th August there is a legally sanctioned 24hr stoppage;

Commencing: Midnight tonight Thursday 18 August 2400hrs

Ending: Midnight Friday 19th August 2359Hrs.

All members are expected  to not attend duties during this time. Note there is no requirement under the Fair Work Act to inform your employer of your intention to take protected industrial action.

A mass meeting will be held tomorrow Friday 19th August: 10am Rosehill Bowling Club (Corner Hassall St / James Ruse Drive Rosehill.

This is a critical point in the negotiations and it is absolutely critical that everyone attends so we can hear everyone’s views and feedback.

Non-attendance will be taken as supporting whatever decision the meeting takes tomorrow.

Time for Aristocrat to pay out after hitting the Jackpot

Paul Lister - Tuesday, August 16, 2016

ETU members are aware that we have been in negotiations for a new EBA that delivers improved pay and conditions. Members would also know that Aristocrat in recent years has hit the Jackpot so to speak, all you need to do is look at their performance over the past year, I have included this on the next page so members can understand exactly how well Aristocrat are doing.

After ONLY 3 EBA MEETINGS management have now told us that the next meeting, scheduled for 25 August, will be the final negotiating meeting. Rather than continue good faith negotiations management have said that they intend to circulate a new agreement for employees to vote on. So what are they offering? 

 

Aristocrat Can & Should Do Better…

In the past year Aristocrats share price has doubled. This has not been through management waiving a magic wand – this growth has been driven by the hard work and commitment from you, the workers.

Last year revenue grew by 47% to over $1 Billion and profits grew 53% to $372 million and on top of this shareholders received a 25% pay increase in their dividends.

So where to from here?

Through negotiations management and the union have been able to agree on some improvement such as Living Away from Home Allowance, Team Leader Allowance and we are working on options around personal use of work vehicles and cashing out of sick leave however nothing has been agreed to in these areas.

IT IS THE ETU’S POSITION THAT WE ARE STILL IN NEGOTIATIONS AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO WORK TO SECURE A FAIR AND DECENT OUTCOME FOR MEMBERS. YOUR BARGAINING UNIT CONSIDER MANAGEMENTS OFFER TO BE DISINGENUOUS AND ON THE VERY LOW SIDE GIVEN THE COMPANY’S FINANCIAL POSITON AND STRONG PERFORMANCE.

Members should take the time to update your details with the union to ensure you receive up to date information and any employee who is not currently a union member is encouraged to join. If you have any questions or would like to JOIN THE ETU, contact Ben Lister on 0400 264 007.

ALL EMPLOYEES ARE ENCOURAGED TO VOTE NO SHOULD MANAGEMENT PUT OUT AN AGREEMENT THAT INCLUDES THE LOW PAY INCREASES AND POOR CONDITIONS OUTLINED IN THIS NOTICE.

CUB Fundraiser - Wednesday 17 August

Paul Lister - Monday, August 15, 2016

Fuji Xerox EBA Update - 12 August

Paul Lister - Monday, August 15, 2016

Please click on the link below for the latest update on the Fuji Xerox EBA negotiations. This follows the four hour work stoppage last Thursday and provides additional information for members following a meeting with management last Friday.

CLICK HERE TO READ THE LATEST FUJI XEROX EBA UPDATE.

 

ETU NSW Supports Sacked CUB Workers

Paul Lister - Thursday, August 11, 2016

The ETU NSW Branch has swung their support behind our Victorian brothers in their fight against Carlton & United Breweries after CUB contracted out the jobs of 54 electricians and fitters and offered the workers to reapply for their old jobs on 65% less pay.

The ETU NSW, AMWU and Unions NSW are hitting the streets tomorrow to raise awareness of this bastard act with members of the public. WE ARE ASKING ALL ETU MEMBERS TO ATTEND ONE OF THE ACTIONS OCCURING TOMORROW IN SYDNEY CBD, PARRAMATTA AND PENRITH.

We will be handing out flyer asking members of the public to boycott CUB products including VB. Details for each event can be found below - please click on the link for each event for full details.

SYDNEY CBD - CLICK HERE (Pitt St Mall, 12noon - 1pm Friday 12 August outside Myer handing out flyers. Contact Salim Babar: 0417 286 482)

PARRAMATTA - CLICK HERE (Pitt St Mall, 12noon - 2pm Friday 12 August outside Myer handing out flyers. Contact Iris Knight 0429 464 064)

PENRITH - CLICK HERE (Penrith Plaza - Riley St 12noon - 2pm outside Westfield entry/exit handing out flyers. Contact Mary Yaager 0408 931 899)

 

Fuji Xerox EBA Update - 5 August 2016

Paul Lister - Friday, August 05, 2016

Members and supporters,

Your EBA negotiating committee met with FXA management on Monday 01st August 2016 in a bid to further progress the EBA claim. Further progress was made in the areas of the introduction of GPS and Travelling time. No progress was made in the areas of the pay claim and the introduction of a Status Quo provision for disputes.

Areas of progress on outstanding issues

GPS Tracking as stated in the last update the company has agreed to drop their claim for tracking employees. Instead the proposal is that a volunteer group of employees would participate in a pilot / trial program which would assist FXA in developing a model proposal to be put to employees with a view to subsequent implementation being subject to employee acceptance of the model. The ETU had requested more detail around the parameters on how the trial would be implemented and in the event of full implementation on what basis that would occur. Fuji as of yesterday have come up with the following detail in response;

Additional GIS information as proposed in EA Meeting 14

  • FXA would like to retain the ability to continue pilot phase testing of GIS with a target of no less than 20% of volunteer employees proportioned by state. To ensure geographic coverage we are seeking minimum of 2 engineers per team or 1 for smaller teams where 2  would be greater than 20%.
  • The pilot phase is to capture the benefits to the customer, the organisation and employees in order to validate benefits.
  • Clauses previously tabled regarding FXA assurances to be included in the EBA regarding the implementation of GIS stand.
  • 13.2 FXA undertakes that the introduction of global positioning technologies.
  • 13.2.1   Will not to be used as a disciplinary tool.
  • 13.2.2   Will not be sold to 3rd parties.
  • 13.2.3   Utilised within the privacy act 1988.
  • 13.2.4   Will not be used to track individuals outside of normal business hours of the employee including annual leave, RDO’s and personal leave.
  • The implementation of GIS will be subject to consultation with employee and union representation and can only be introduced through the life of this agreement with the consensus of a 75% majority of field acceptance through an employee vote.

Travelling Time As resolved at the mass meeting on Thursday 28th July, the Company’s proposal that payment of excess travelling time be paid only after travelling occurs over 35km outside the Technicians nominated district was deemed unacceptable.  This was communicated at the meeting with FXA as well as NSW members’ view that it was not a matter of compensation but leeway regarding start times. We made the point that the members believed such leeway should be time based not km based. In the same correspondence as the above GIS proposal FXA yesterday, have come up with the following graduated km based proposal;

First Call of the Day- Start Time Adjustment

It is proposed that calls assigned as first call of the day have a start time grace period under the following circumstances: From time to time to meet our customer obligations we may need to assign calls outside of the employees accustomed working area, or district.


 
Lack of progress on outstanding issues

Pay Rise The current company offer of a $2,000 pay rise in years 1 and 2 of the Agreement and $2,300 for years 3 and 4 stands, with FXA not prepared to offer any more.

Dispute Settlement Procedure (DSP) The current company proposal FXA of retaining the current DSP which has no provision for invoking of status quo remains the company position notwithstanding the fact that the ETU has proposed a set of limiting circumstances under which status quo could be invoked.

At the last mass meeting NSW members gave unanimous delegated authority to take more protected industrial action if a suitable resolution was not reached. As a result a 4hr legal industrial action stoppage of work will occur between the hours of 1:00pm and 5pm Thursday 11th August July 2016. During this time members should attend a stop work meeting to be held at Rosehill Bowling Club, Hassall St, Rosehill. As of 1pm, members should be proceeding to their allocated job then proceed to the above location for the meeting. Your attendance at the meeting is critical.

If you are not a member of the union it is illegal to take this protected industrial action. If are not in the ETU and you want to do the right thing and join in a collective effort to help you and your mates – please go to the website and join today.

In Unity,
MARK BUTTIGIEG
0417 208 447 | markb@etunsw.asn.au

Fatality on Canberra Construction Site

Paul Lister - Friday, August 05, 2016

Last night a construction worker was killed in a catastrophic incident on a Canberra building site. First and foremost, the ETU wishes to extend its deep and sincere condolences to the family and friends of the worker who lost his life last night. Our thoughts go out the workers on the site that lost a friend and comrade in such catastrophic circumstances.

From what we know of the incident so far, a crane driver from Sydney was killed when he was struck by the boom of a crane that rolled over during an on-site operation that went horribly wrong. The crane driver was assisting in the operation at the time and was not operating the crane that rolled over.

Electrical workers from Heyday 5 in Canberra were working in conjunction with the site crane crew to relocated a large generator from one area of the site to another. A worker was killed when he was struck by the boom of the non-slewing mobile crane (franna) after it rolled over during the placement of the load. Whilst the electrical workers were not injured as a result of the incident they have undoubtedly witnessed a horrific and catastrophic event that will adversely impact on them psychologically as the initial  shock of the incident wears off. The ETU has made offers of support to the workers and to the company involved.

This incident serves as a stark reminder of how dangerous our industry can be and highlights the importance of being ever vigilant when it comes to workplace safety.

If you need assistance or you wish to talk to your ETU organiser please contact the ETU office on 02 9267 4844 and one of our memberhip services officers assist you.

ETU Cracks Down on Site Safety

Paul Lister - Monday, August 01, 2016

As part of the ETU’s construction and contracting campaign the union has started to crack down on worksite safety.

As part of this hardline approach ETU Organisers Mick Hopper and Antony Stegic attended a Lend Lease site at Macarthur Square last week where multiple safety breaches were identified. Builder Lend Lease agreed that the identified breaches needed to be rectified and proceeded to shut down a majority of the job until electrical contractor’s Neilson and All Tech fixed the problems.

Even more disturbing was the fact that All Tech had no licensed electricians onsite despite unlicensed overseas labour hire workers continuing to perform work.

On another site at Sutherland Hospital, builder Richard Crookes was forced to halt work after the ETU identified electrical safety breaches. This time the electrical contractor was Grid Electrical who were forces to rectify issues immediately after being instructed to do so by the builder.

On both sites the union raised concerns over amenities as there was not enough room for all workers to use them. After raising concerns both sites have improved amenities by bringing in additional sheds – a win that will benefit all workers on these sites.

If you have any safety concerns or need assistance on-site please contact your site delegate or ETU Organiser.

Fuji Xerox EBA Update - 27 July 2016

Paul Lister - Thursday, July 28, 2016

Members and supporters,

Your EBA negotiating committee met with FXA management on Monday 18th July 2016 in a bid to further progress the EBA claim. Some more progress was made but not enough to get an Agreement completed prior to the expiry of our right to take protected industrial action in accordance with our successful protected action ballot (PAB) which expires on the 30th of this month.

Areas of progress on outstanding issues.

GPS Tracking: The company has agreed to drop their claim for tracking employees. Instead the proposal is that a volunteer group of employees would participate in a pilot / trial program which would assist FXA in developing a model proposal to be put to employees with a view to subsequent implementation being subject to employee acceptance of the model. The ETU noted this progress with the company but made the point that we required some more firm parameters around how the trial would proceed and on what basis subsequent acceptance, if any, would be deemed legitimate.

Travelling Time: The Company has proposed that payment of excess travelling time be paid only after travelling occurs over 35km outside the Technicians nominated district. The proposal is subject to FXA conducting cost / benefit analysis. The ETU made the point that this proposal, notwithstanding the fact that FXA are yet to make a firm offer until they have conducted the cost benefit analysis, is problematic given the dimensions of the Sydney Metropolitan Area and the density of traffic, so such a radius would rarely result in compensation for excess travelling time.

Lack of progress on outstanding issues.

Pay Rise: The company have offered a $2,00 pay rise in years 1 and 2 of the Agreement and $2,300 for years 3 and 4.

Dispute Settlement Procedure (DSP): FXA wish to retain the current DSP which has no provision for invoking of status quo. The ETU, at FXA’s request provided some limiting parameters around which Status Quo would apply but the company still refuses to consider this provision. The ETU maintained our position that without Status Quo the company simply proceeds through a “tick the box” consultative process then implements decisions which have major impact on our members. Subsequent disputes then have less effect because the changes have already been implemented.

As a result of this remaining impasse we made it clear to FXA that we would be forced to activate member’s right to take protected action in accordance with the successful PBA before that right expires on 30th July. As a result a 2hr legal industrial action stoppage of work will occur between the hours of 8:30am and 10:30am tomorrow 28th July 2016. During this time members should attend a stop work meeting to be held at Rosehill Bowling Club, Hassall St, Rosehill. Members should proceed to their allocated job for an 8:30 start as normal then proceed to the above location for the meeting. I have attached the FXA offer in detail for members to consider, the offer will form the basis of discussion at the meeting during which time direction from members will be sought as to whether or not further actions are required. Your attendance at the meeting is critical.

In Unity,

Mark Buttigieg.

ETU secures more than $60,000 in pay, entitlements for ripped off workers.

Paul Lister - Friday, July 22, 2016

"We couldn't have done it without the ETU" – Chris Walker

Electrical contracting company VMH based in Shellharbour went broke while working on a Lend Lease site at Darling Harbour Live. They were also contracted across major sites with state and federal government funding in Sydney. 

Five ETU members were paid zero superanuation for up to a year and also had their wages, accruals and redundancy payments ripped off. The ETU pursued the issue with primary contractor Johnson Controls and Lend Lease Building to ensure that all ETU members recovered their superannuation and other entitlements which amounted to over $60,000.

The ETU became aware of the situation when one of our members, Chris Walker, enquired about his redundancy entitlements after being let go by the company in April. Initially, Chris wanted to know how much redundancy he was entitled to after working there for several years. However, Chris was unaware that the boss tricked him into reducing his wages to 'help the company'. The boss told him he would have to resign from the company first to make it legal to reduce his wages. In fact what the boss did was to steal his notice period and redundancy payments for the years he had worked. It was another example of wages theft!

ETU organisers Stewart Edward, Fred Barbin and Mick Hopper pursued the matter vigorously to ensure all monies owed were paid.

"This example of a company going broke or not paying correct entitlements on major construction sites is now common.” Said ETU organiser Stewart Edward.

“It is important that all workers check the name of the company they are working for and that it is written on their wage slip. Furthermore, it is essential that workers check that their superannuation is actually being paid into their accounts not just written on their wage slips.” Stewart said.

“Non payment of superannuation is an early indicator that your boss may be winding up the company you work for so it is important for workers to be vigilant." Stewart said.

The ETU understands that the individual involved in running this company may also have been involve in seething up another company with different directors to continue tendering on the same construction sites and with the same builders. The ETU will be keeping an eye on the situation in order to protect members.

If you have any concerns about your wages and entitlements you should contact the ETU on 9267 4844 .

 


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