Latest TWU industrial action targets StarTrack and Fedex


Applications lodged for strikes at both over job security agreements

Latest TWU industrial action targets StarTrack and Fedex
A strike by StarTrack employees is likely to affect parcel deliveries.

 

Following a recent application by almost 7,000 Toll employees to the Fair Work Commission (FWC) to hold a vote to go on strike due to a claimed substandard enterprise agreement, another 6,000 StarTrack and FedEx transport workers are joining the push for industrial action.

The Transport Workers Union (TWU) says proposed StarTrack and FedEx agreements undermine job security, despite bumper profits at wealthy retailers like Amazon and Apple whose parcels they transport.

On August 6, transport workers filed applications with the FWC to hold a vote at each company to go on strike.

If the ballots are successful and agreements have still not been met with the companies, workers could begin industrial action in the coming months in a move that would cause major disruption to parcel deliveries.

The FWC accepted a protected action ballot for 7,000 Toll workers in July, with voting to commence on August 10 over plans to take industrial action.

The TWU says a crucial sticking point which has caused negotiations to break down across all three major transport companies has been their refusal to pay outside hire workers the same rates as direct employees for doing the same job.

This causes workers to lose critical overtime hours and fear that they will be forced onto lower pay and conditions to keep their jobs in the future.

FedEx.jpg

Talks failed to reach agreement at FedEx over the company’s refusal of job security provisions and consistent site rates for all work carried out to be paid at the same rate.

Workers are also reportedly angry over the company’s attempt to remove fair dispute procedures from disciplinary matters that further threatens jobs. 

According to the TWU, FedEx reported record full-year results in June with revenues jumping to A$113.5 billion and net income over $6.7 billion.

The union said workers are furious that FedEx continues to run a golf tournament with a $60 million prize while refusing workers a pay increase for the last two years.

StarTrack negotiations also collapsed in late July after the company denied back pay for the high-demand 2020 year and refused to prioritise direct employees over outside hire who are paid less for doing the same work.

The TWU reported that workers have already reported an increase in outside hire taking up overtime hours which threatens workers’ pay and conditions into the future.

StarTrack is Australia Post’s most profitable division as a result of workers’ efforts last year, with Australia Post reporting a 15.5 per cent increase in revenue and profits of $166m in the six months to December 2020, TWU noted.


RELATED ARTICLE: Industrial pressure ramps up on Toll


"Workers have sacrificed their time, energy and the safety of their families battling COVID restrictions to get high volumes of parcels to our front doors. Now they’re being asked to sacrifice the safety of their future pay and conditions despite earning record profits for their companies’ wealthy clients like Amazon and Apple," TWU assistant national secretary Nick McIntosh said.

"These workers are bravely standing up for road safety across our communities.

"They know that the denial of job security provisions allows companies to cut costs by paying other workers less to do the same job.

"When pay and conditions are slashed in transport, stressed out, fatigued truck drivers are pressured to work quickly over longer hours to make ends meet.

"This is a growing threat right across the industry. It’s why we’ve seen a truck driver killed every 10 days since the Federal Government pulled down a tribunal tasked with addressing the slaughter brought about by unregulated corporate greed."

 

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