Organise Issue 2, April 2013 ASU Victorian Private Sector Branch, L1, 117 Capel Street North Melbourne 3051
Payroll at Jetstar - offshore and offside A few years ago, management at Jetstar offshored their in-house payroll department to a ‘business processes outsourcing’ firm in the Philippines, putting their existing payroll staff out of work in an effort to reduce costs. Predictably, the move has created more angst than the cost difference could possibly justify. In just the last 12 months, Jetstar staff have suffered errors on group certificates, incorrectly paid (or unpaid) bonuses, lost pay rises, and endless, ubiquitous mistakes in individuals’ pay. The mistakes abounding from the offshore payroll processing add insult to injury. Jetstar members are understandably nervous about the fate of their personal data, offshored beyond the protection of Australian privacy law. The outsourced payroll company Jetstar have engaged reportedly brought administration back onshore to Australia in September 2012, but errors continue. Jetstar are reviewing the system, but refuse to rule out offshoring the payroll function again. Again, Jetstar staff’s personal data would be beyond Australia’s jurisdiction, without the permission of the staff concerned. Jetstar staff are currently preparing a petition calling on Jetstar to fix payroll by bringing it back onshore and in-house. Jetstar are ultimately responsible for paying staff correctly!
Save the date!
This is just one unfortunate example of the effects of offshoring. The ASU’s “Secure Jobs, Secure Data” campaign aims to raise community awareness of the dual effect of businesses outsourcing processes to offshore providers: we’re losing jobs, and we’re losing control of our private data. It is an issue devastating the services sector – that’s ASU members! All members are invited to sign on to the campaign. Our brand new campaign website will be officially launched shortly, but ASU members can view it ahead of the launch at www.securejobssecuredata.org.au All ASU delegates are encouraged to visit the website, learn about the campaign, and use the handy web tool to send a message to the PM to take action on offshoring.
Authorised by Ingrid Stitt, Secretary Australian Services Union Victorian Private Sector Branch Level 1, 117 Capel Street North Melbourne
Airlines & Related Virgin
Toll Dnata and Cloudbreak
ASU organisers have been representing Virgin members in the Fair Work Commission (formerly Fair Work Australia) over a range of issues, with determinations due at the end of the month.
Toll Dnata have knowingly engaged a contractor to do work currently done by employees, paying the contractor’s employees $16 per hour with no penalty rates.
The ASU is representing Virgin members on a matter concerning the payment of disability allowance. ASU members’ position is that the allowance is payable to all employees during the time that construction works take place on site (in excess of two weeks).
The company that Toll Dnata has engaged is called Cloudbreak Aviation Services. It is important to note that the employees of Cloudbreak are not at fault and it is their employer that is paying them below industry rates and standards.
Virgin believe that (in some cases) 45 cents is enough compensation for the time that employees have spent in construction zones with excessive noise, dust and a dirty working environment. The case is ongoing as Organise goes to print, with a decision due towards the end of April.
Introductory Delegates Training New Dates! 5-6 June 7-8 August Book through the office: (03) 9320 6700
When the ASU negotiated the Toll Dnata EBA, bargaining reps ensured there was a job security clause contained in it. Effectively, this clause does not allow Toll Dnata to engage a contractor to do the work of Toll employers, unless the employees of the contractor are paid exactly the same terms and conditions. The clause was designed to be a disincentive to contract out members’ work. The ASU will be ensuring that the EBA is enforced, and Toll Dnata is held to account. Union reps will also be meeting with Cloudbreak to ensure that they are clear of their obligations to their employees, and to prevent them from continuing to undercut industry terms and conditions. The ASU will also help Cloudbreak employees who join the union to claim the pay and conditions they are owed.
StarTrack - Still a long way to go! The ASU welcomes StarTrack’s recent announcement of a uniform Paid Parental Leave policy for all StarTrack employees. The company acknowledged that the policy was being updated to correct employees being treated differently based on their conditions of employment. Union members first achieved Paid Parental Leave in a previous agreement with Australian Air Express. Staff at StarTrack are covered by different industrial agreements or employment contracts based on when they started with StarTrack or AAE (which have merged). This means there are discrepancies in wages, entitlements and protections between staff. The ASU has been pushing for consistent conditions (including parental leave) to be applied across the board to all StarTrack employees. For some time these calls have fallen on deaf ears. It is hoped that StarTrack’s acknowledgement of unfairness due to different paid parental leave provisions amongst staff indicates a willingness to apply this principle across the board.
Message from Branch Secretary Ingrid Stitt
34 EBAs in 2013 It’s going to be a very exciting year for the ASU, with 34 EBAs to be renegotiated over 2013! Although each of these workplaces is unique, as workers and union members we share many common concerns. From our many discussions with delegates and surveys of hundreds of members, it is clear that job security—in one form or another—is a priority across nearly every workplace. At the airport, members are concerned about the undercutting of wages occurring through insecure contracts and outsourcing. Workers doing the same job are being divided and prevented from organising by employers using multiple subsidiaries and contractors instead of transparent supply chains. So, for example, two workers doing the same job on the same roster may have different pay and conditions - just because of the letterhead their employment contract was printed on! In contract call centres, members are concerned that many successful Australian companies are sending their contracts offshore, rather than keeping the work in Australia and developing Australian talent. This encourages call centres to keep their staff on casual employment contracts, so that members have no security of employment day to day. The ASU has (and will continue to fight for) strong EBA provisions that protect against contracting out, and we will be enforcing those provisions. In each workplace, from RACV to Tenix to Eastlink, and in the legal sector, members are fighting for secure jobs with decent pay, job security and respect at work. Our theme for the year is “Secure Jobs, Secure Data”. It’s a campaign against offshoring that touches on the conditions we’re fighting for in each of our EBAs. As cloud computing becomes more common, many jobs in our sector are potentially at risk of offshoring. Successful Australian businesses are abusing the poverty and vulnerability of third world workers, thinking they can pressure us into accepting lower conditions here. But by working across our whole union we can fight this. In each EBA campaign we’ll secure and strengthen our conditions, and as a union, we’ll fight offshoring in our sector. I hope that each delegate will find time to take one action to support Secure Jobs Secure Data, as well as leading the EBA battles at work! Yours in Unity, Ingrid Stitt, Branch Secretary
Secure Jobs Secure Data depends on YOUR involvement! Sign up at www.securejobssecuredata.org.au or return slip on reverse to the ASU.
SECU R SECU E JOBS RE DA TA .O RG.
Bargaining in the environment sector This year the ASU will be negotiating new agreements at both the Australian Conservation Foundation and Environment Victoria. Members at ACF and EV work for the conservation of the environment, and (like members in other community organisations) value industrial outcomes relating to work life balance, respect at work, and transparent management.
“As employees in the sector, we have a responsibility to make sure the wages and conditions are sufficient to attract and retain great staff, and keep our jobs secure and sustainable.” - Lindsay Hesketh, ACF Delegate
Lindsay Hesketh, ACF delegate and ASU executive member, describes the importance of strong union structures in environment sector workplaces: “People in the environment sector are really committed to the work we do, so it makes sense for us to organise and speak up in our workplaces”. “As employees in the sector, we have a responsibility to make sure the wages and conditions are sufficient to attract and retain great staff, and keep our jobs secure and sustainable.”
• Members meetings are being held at Qantas to finalise endorsement of a national log of claims. The first meeting with Qantas management took place on 26 March.
• ASU members at Eastlink are currently bargaining to replace one of the ASU’s last agreements from the “WorkChoices” era. • At Transurban, bargaining surveys have been distributed and member meetings are underway. Delegates and organisers from the ASU Vic Private Sector branch are working closely with our colleagues in New South Wales to build a national agreement for Transurban.
• Bargaining is beginning at Publicis Loyalty, and delegates recently attended training in negotiating skills. Members meetings were held over the past few weeks to finalise claims, and the first meetings are being planned. The Publicis EBA is one of the first of the major airline EBAs to be negotiated in a year that will see a huge amount of bargaining in the industry.
How will we develop the skills we need? Name:
Phone: Sign me up to help Secure Jobs Secure Data! I have a personal experience of offshoring to share Return: reply paid envelope or fax to 9320 6799
SECURE JOBS SECURE DATA .org.au