Union scores another legal win over Qantas

Original article by Robyn Ironside
The Australian – Page: 15 : 22-Sep-21

The Federal Court has rejected Qantas’s push to delay a preliminary remedy hearing with regard to the reinstatement of ground-handling staff whose jobs had been outsourced. The preliminary hearing had been scheduled for 1 October, but Qantas argued that it should be postponed until the carrier’s appeal against the Federal Court’s recent ruling in the case is heard in 2022. The court had found that Qantas’s decision to outsource 2,000 jobs was at least partly aimed at avoiding industrial action; the airline had contended that the move was solely aimed at achieving cost savings of $100m.

CORPORATES
QANTAS AIRWAYS LIMITED – ASX QAN, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Strike threat to parcel deliveries

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 7 : 6-Aug-21

Workers at parcel delivery firms StarTrack and FedEx may take strike action over stalled negotiations regarding a new enterprise agreement. The Transport Workers’ Union will apply to the Fair Work Commission to hold a ballot of its members at the two companies. Amongst other things, the TWU wants any pay rise in the new enterprise agreements to be backdated to 2020, in order to compensate workers for agreeing to forgo wage increases due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

CORPORATES
STARTRACK COMMUNICATIONS (AUSTRALIA) PTY LTD, FEDERAL EXPRESS (AUSTRALIA) PTY LTD, TRANSPORT WORKERS’ UNION, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Coles abandons enterprise bargaining for staff at its stores

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 2 : 28-Jul-21

The existing enterprise agreement for workers in Coles stores expired more than 14 months ago, but the retail giant has refused to negotiate a new deal with unions. The Fair Work Act prohibits workers from taking protected industrial action if their employer refuses to engage in enterprise bargaining. The full bench of the Fair Work Commission recently rejected an application by the Retail & Fast Food Workers’ Union for a majority support determination based on its petition of 2,000 Coles employees. The union plans to take Coles to the Federal Court to force it to the negotiating table. Coles still negotiates agreements with its distribution centres, which are heavily unionised.

CORPORATES
COLES GROUP LIMITED – ASX COL, RETAIL AND FAST FOOD WORKERS UNION INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Pubs plan one-size-fits-all pay for full-timers

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 6 : 21-Jul-21

The Australian Hotels Association has proposed the introduction of all-in pay rates for full-time workers in the hospitality sector. AHA CEO Stephen Ferguson says that no employee would be disadvantaged under the proposed loaded rates regime, which would provide workers with higher above-award pay rates in lieu of some penalty rates. He says many employees in the sector would benefit from a simplified pay system. The United Workers Union will consult with its members regarding the proposal, which has been put before the Fair Work Commission.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN HOTELS ASSOCIATION, UNITED WORKERS UNION, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Miners prefer casual jobs for loading

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 14-Jul-21

Representatives of labour hire firms have appeared before the Senate inquiry into job security. One Key Resources MD Ben Lewis said that less than one per cent of its workforce of about 900 asks to convert from casual to permanent employment each year, attributing this to the higher rate of pay when the casual loading is taken into account. He added that a similar proportion of workers opt to switch from permanent to casual employment. Chandler Macleod’s chief people officer Mark Graham also said that many of its casual workers have rejected an offer of permanent employment.

CORPORATES
ONE KEY RESOURCES PTY LTD, CHANDLER MACLEOD GROUP LIMITED

IR reform will avoid project blowouts

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 2 : 10-Jun-21

The federal government has received support from the resources sector for its plans to put greenfield workplace agreements back on the industrial relations agenda. The Australian Resources & Energy Group says protected and unprotected industrial action have contributed to significant cost blowouts at number of major resources projects in recent years. Greenfield agreements would cover the entire construction phase of a project. Such agreements were included in the omnibus industrial relations bill that was rejected by the Senate earlier in 2021.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN RESOURCES AND ENERGY GROUP

Labor, unions to fight Morrison on IR push

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 2 : 9-Jun-21

The Australian Workers’ Union will oppose any renewed attempt by the federal government to introduce greenfield workplace agreements. Such agreements were included in the omnibus industrial relations bill that was rejected by the Senate earlier in 2021. AWU national secretary Daniel Walton contends that major projects have been approved without greenfield agreements being in place, and the government’s proposal would merely put downward pressure on wages. Shadow industrial relations minister Tony Burke has also accused the government of pushing for wage growth restraint.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN WORKERS’ UNION-FEDERATION OF INDUSTRIAL, MANUFACTURING AND ENGINEERING EMPLOYEES, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

NAB faces legal hit over pay shortfall

Original article by Richard Gluyas
The Australian – Page: 13 & 19 : 26-May-21

National Australia Bank included a pre-tax provision of $128m for wage underpayments in its financial accounts for the second half of 2020. NAB’s remediation program has resulted in current and former part-time employees receiving a combined $55m in compensation to date. However, the Finance Sector Union believes that NAB’s wages underpayment bill may be much higher, given that many of the affected employees work full-time. The union is preparing to take Federal Court action on behalf of NAB’s full-time workers.

CORPORATES
NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, FINANCE SECTOR UNION, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Deloitte reveals extent of workplace complaints

Original article by Edmund Tadros, Hannah Wootton
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 22-Apr-21

Professional services firm Deloitte has disclosed that it has investigated about 15 workplace complaints annually over the last three years. The firm’s voluntary disclosure follows recent media reports which revealed that rival firm KPMG received nearly 100 workplace complaints between 2014 and March 2019, an average of about 17 per year. The majority of these complaints were allegations of bullying or sexual harassment. Workplace experts agree that the number of complaints lodged at KPMG does not reflect the true extent of the problem.

CORPORATES
DELOITTE TOUCHE TOHMATSU LIMITED, KPMG AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Wage freeze needed due to vaccine delays

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 5 : 22-Apr-21

The Restaurant & Catering Industry Association has urged the Fair Work Commission to take into account the delay in the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines when deciding whether to increase the minimum wage. The RCIA contends that the minimum wage should either be left at its current level in 2021-22 or any increase for workers in hard-hit industries should be delayed until February 2022. ACTU secretary Sally McManus argues that a minimum wage freeze would result in a pay cut in real terms for one in five workers at a time when domestic spending is essential to Australia’s economic recovery.

CORPORATES
RESTAURANT AND CATERING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION OF AUSTRALIA INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, ACTU