Logistics News, Shipping News

CFMEU-MUA launches industrial action on DP World

The logistics provider and maritime union are entering negotiations to increase pay and improve rostering conditions

The CFMEU Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) division has made its intentions of industrial action clear, committing to several strikes across October.

These strikes come as a response to continuing negotiation to a new industrial agreement between the union and global logistics provider DP World. 

Workers will undertake action across DP World locations in Sydney, Melbourne, Fremantle and Brisbane. These will range from bans on working overtime or extending shifts to full eight-hour work stoppages.

The company has acknowledged the upcoming action, saying it will aim to quickly come to an agreement while keeping its supply chain moving to ensure minimal disruption.

DP World Oceania executive vice president Nicolaj Noes says that reaching a resolution with the union will be the utmost priority.

“We are committed to keeping Australia’s economy moving and minimising disruption, while we work to achieve a swift resolution on the enterprise agreement in the coming weeks,” he says.

“We remain dedicated to a cooperative and productive dialogue with CFMEU-MUA division. Parties have invested more than 90 hours in ongoing discussions to reach a national agreement.”

As part of the industrial action, the MUA is seeking rises in wages to recognise the significant pressure it believes is currently being faced by maritime workers.

Current terms being put in front of the MUA include a change to rostering systems by DP World, aiming to offer more flexible rostering coming into a Christmas period where freight workers are in greater demand than ever.

“Work practices that ensure an even spread of availability across seven days is a critical element of catering to the flexible and round-the-clock operations of both our customers’ and the nation’s intricate supply chain – especially during peak periods such as the lead up to Christmas,” Noes says.

“Current rosters do not provide an even spread of availability across seven days per week to match our customers’ needs, with the majority of weekend work falling to a single group of employees.

Our goal is to establish a more balanced roster model, which will drive more certainty, minimise unexpected changes and ensure more equitable skills distribution.

We understand that changes in work patterns can impact personal lives, but we are committed to ensuring a smooth transition by providing ample notice.”

The full list of work stoppages are as follows:

DP World Sydney

7 October 2023 (0600 hours) – Bans begin for:  

  • Any work on ships for 8 hours after berthing  
  • Attending work when called past usual notification time  
  • Advanced or delayed starts  
  • Fixed Salary Employees (FSEs) not working as per specific rosters  
  • Performance of work outside of roster panel assigned on 4 September 2023  
  • Work on subcontracted vessels  
  • Taking delayed or advanced meal breaks 

9 October to 13 October 2023 (0600 to 2200 hours) – Bans include:  

  • Overtime  
  • Shift extensions  
  • Upgrades on dayshift

DP World Melbourne

8 October 2023 (1200 hours onwards) – Bans and stoppages include:  

  • 24-hour work stoppage  
  • Bans on work for ships for 8 hours after berthing, attending late calls, advanced or delayed starts, grade 7 work, FSE’s non-specific rostered shifts, and work outside of roster panel assigned on 4 September 2023

9 to 13 October 2023 – Bans include:  

  • Overtime and shift extensions (from 0001 hours 9 Oct to 2359 hours 13 Oct)  
  • 12-hour work stoppage on 9 Oct at 1200 hours  
  • 8-hour work stoppage on 10 Oct starting 0001 hours  
  • 24-hour ban on loading/unloading trucks and trains starting 0600 hours on 13 Oct  

15 to 20 October 2023 – Multiple work stoppages and bans, most notably including:  

  • Four 1-hour consecutive stoppages starting 1800 hours on 15 Oct  
  • Two consecutive 2-hour stoppages starting 0600 hours on 16 Oct  
  • Several 8-hour upgrade bans on specific dates  
  • Overtime and shift extensions ban from 16 to 20 Oct

DP World Fremantle

6 October 2023 (0600 hours onwards) – Bans and stoppages include:  

  • 24-hour work stoppage
  • Overtime, shift extensions, work on ships for 8 hours after berthing, attending late calls, advanced or delayed starts, grade 7 work, FSE’s non-specific rostered shifts, work outside of roster panel assigned on 4 September 2023, work on subcontracted vessels, delayed or advanced meal breaks, and work on public holidays

7 October 2023:  

  • Multiple work stoppages ranging from 4 hours to 12 hours throughout the day

DP World Brisbane

7 October 2023 (0700 hours onwards) – Bans include: 

  • Work on ships for 8 hours after berthing, advanced or delayed starts, work during another employee’s rest period from the proposed agreement, work on subcontracted vessels, FSE’s non-specific rostered shifts, work outside of roster panel assigned on 4 September 2023, early or later meal breaks, and attending 4-hour shifts except for training or meetings

9 to 13 October 2023 (0700 to 2300 hours) – Bans include:  

  • Overtime
  • Shift extensions
  • Deployment of more than two ship crane gangs on dayshift
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