After months of negotiations over the new EBA for the Armaguard Cash Room, Union negotiators can report that we had a number of key breakthroughs in our most recent discussions with management.
Union members will recall that management have been insisting on the new agreement being a straight 2.5% wage increase per annum. Management have been steadfast and refused to offer any other improved outcomes.
This was unacceptable to ASU members who demanded that in addition to the wage offer it was important that an outcome that improves the current redundancy provisions in the EBA was achieved. This was especially important a few weeks back when it looked like the Coles contract was about to disappear to a competitor.
Well – here’s the good news… It was a very good move by ASU members to refuse to accept the original inferior EBA outcome on offer a few weeks ago.
We have now achieved a far better outcome in negotiations on a number of fronts.
1. The wage offer will now be:
a. 2.5% backdated to 1 July, 2013
b. 3.75% from 1 July, 2014
2. The length of the agreement will be for 2 ½ years but the key in the second year is that you’ll get the higher wage increase up front on 1 July, 2013. The new EBA will expire on 31 December, 2015.
3. On the matter of improved redundancy provisions all of the following will be written into the agreement:
a. All employees that have letters relating to old redundancy provisions that applied when Linfox took over the business from Mayne Logistics or when they moved from one branch to another branch will have those old redundancy packages honoured
b. Any disputes relating to redundancy, should the need arise, will go directly to the Commission for determination. The Union position on this matter is that if we need to go to the Commission we say that all employees are entitled to the basis of the old Armaguard package which is the 3 weeks per year of service model.
4. The Disputes Procedure will now be altered so that it includes provision for the Commission to make a formal decision by arbitration on workplace matters in dispute. This is a major outcome as it will mean that there’ll be no more wishy washy Commission hearings that simply go nowhere because the Commission doesn’t have the power to make a decision – now they will. This is a major outcome for this agreement.
5. It was also agreed that the parties would begin a full review of the current Grading & Classification Structure within 4 weeks of the making of the new agreement and that such review would be complete within the first six months of the new agreement. This will allow us all to look at how well the grading structure works and if and where we need to recommend any changes to the system. This work will commence through the Consultative Committee at the workplace.
Management are now busy putting a draft agreement together to reflect all of these newly negotiated changes. As soon as that Draft Agreement has been reviewed by the Union we will bring it out to members in the coming days for a formal vote on whether we accept it or not.
We will arrange meetings of ASU members as soon as we have that document. Stay tuned for more information soon. In the meantime if you have any queries please see your ASU delegates: Joan Miles, Faye Parker, Deb Bell, Cathy Belci or Jeff Orr at Essendon or Myriam Payet at Carrum Downs.