Rail, Aviation and Transport

Rail, Aviation and Transport


Paul Lister - Thursday, February 08, 2018

Sydney Trains has tabled a ‘final’ EBA offer which will go to a postal ballot of ETU members and all rail employees from 5 March.

The ETU is consulting members for feedback on the proposed EBA. At this stage, the Combined Rail Unions, including the ETU, hold to our claim for annual pay rises of 4% per annum. While the offer below is the best presented so far in negotiations, it falls short of that benchmark.

Protected Action Ballot continues: please vote immediately

It remains very important that all ETU members vote in the current Protected Action Ballot. Members are strongly urged to vote YES to all options in that ballot. A successful ballot will ensure ETU members are able to take Protected Action, if required in the event workers reject the current EBA offer.

Summary of Sydney Trains ‘final’ offer

The key elements of the offer presented yesterday by Sydney Trains management to Combined Rail Unions include:

  • a three-year agreement with annual 3% pay rises
  • 3% from date of approval, 3% 12 months after approval and 3% 24 months after approval
  • a one-off $1,000 payment to each employee on approval of the agreement.

The offer extends Travel Passes for existing employees (including current employees with Gold Passes) to:

  • all metropolitan and outer metropolitan bus operations
  • Sydney Metro from Rouse Hill to Bankstown
  • CBD (including existing Inner West services) and SE light rail services.

Management claims that the combined value of the annual pay rises, the one-off payment and the extended Travel Pass is 4.06% per annum averaged over three years. The Combined Rail Unions are conducting independent research to test the veracity of that estimate.

The offer includes an improved Contractors Clause which establishes a separate Consultative Committee at which the ETU will be able to vet any proposed contracting out of electrical work.

Regarding the Master Roster, which affects ETU members in Fleet Maintenance, the offer provides ‘visibility of change, capped number of changes and minimum roster duration’.

Redeployment and redundancy provisions maintain 64 weeks paid redundancy, but remain in the deed outside the agreement.

There are improvements to the Facilitation Clause including access to a mediator if required.

Most existing conditions would be rolled over from the current EBA, however there are a number of other proposed changes in the new document which will be provided in full to all ETU members from mid-February.

Timeline for access to proposed EBA, voting and Roadshow

Key dates in the process from here:

  • EBA draft distributed from 12 February
  • all employees have access to that document from 23 February
  • Postal ballot opens 5 March
  • Ballot closes 20 March
  • Management Roadshow February-March.

We encourage ETU members to provide feedback on this offer via ETU organiser Anthony O’Sullivan anthonyo@etunsw.com.au 0429 429 234

In unity
Anthony O’Sullivan and Ben Lister
ETU Organisers

Combined Delegates Reject Managements Week Old Offer

Paul Lister - Monday, February 05, 2018

Last Thursday 1 February the Combined Rail Union delegates met to hear from management and consider an EBA offer, tabled on 17 January, that had already been rejected by the negotiating committee. At this meeting, more than 200 rail delegates from seven unions, including the ETU, unanimously rejected the offer, which included annual pay increases of 2.75%, a one-off $1,000 payment and an extended travel pass.

In a sign of good faith, the combined rail delegates agreed to reduce the pay claim from 6% to 4% per year and have advised management to go away and come back with an improved wages offer. The combined unions negotiating committee is meeting again today to resolve claims around domestic violence leave, redundancy deed, master roster issues and the facilitation clause.

A further EBA meeting with Sydney Trains management on Wednesday will continue to work around agreement wording.


In a further development, Sydney Trains management has blocked ETU depot meetings that were planned to commence this week. Sydney Trains management has advised the ETU that they will not facilitate paid meetings at this stage in negotiations.

As a result the ETU is considering before and after-hours depot meetings and a telephone townhall to discuss the EBA and Protected Action Ballot and to gather feedback from members.


ETU members should now be receiving their ballot papers for the Protected Action Ballot – IT IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT THAT ALL ETU MEMBERS TAKE THE TIME TO VOTE AND RETURN YOUR BALLOT PAPER. We are asking members to VOTE YES to all questions. This will allow ETU members to join industrial action with other union members, should it be needed, in the future. Industrial action may not be required but the threat of industrial action will increase pressure on management to improve any future offer.

We will keep members informed of any developments. Please stay tuned for details of the out-of-hours depot meetings and telephone townhall which are likely to occur over the coming week.

A reminder to ensure your contact details are up-to-date – call the office on (02) 9267 4844 to check. Any other questions, contact organiser Anthony O’Sullivan anthonyo@etunsw.com.au or 0429 429 234.

In Unity,
Anthony O’Sullivan
ETU Organiser