The combined unions have been in consultation with Ausgrid regarding the proposed implementation of the Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE) and Medical Assessment Procedure.

Delegates from Sydney, Central Coast and the Newcastle/ Hunter regions took part in the meetings and have agreed to the implementation of the first stage of the roll out.

The First Stage involves members who sit under the Power Worker structure and work on or near the distribution network. This includes Line Workers-Jointers-Technicians-ESOs-EMSOs and District Operators.

Ausgrid have made some concessions on their original proposal, with blood tests being voluntary. The blood screening is solely to identify any potential cardiovascular problems and not for the screening of drugs and alcohol.

The weight limit has been raised from 125Kg to 135Kg and will flag only as an indicator, and not deem you unfit for duties.

You can elect to use your own GP for the medical aspect of the assessment. All medical records stay with your nominated GP. Ausgrid will only receive a medical examination certificate stating either that you are fit for normal duties or not.

If restrictions are identified, Ausgrid will manage a tailored rehabilitation and return to work program to ensure that members are returned to normal duties in an agreed time frame.

The FCE will be carried out individually by accredited therapists and involves several bending-reaching-stoop-squat/kneeling and lifting tests.   

The Second Stage of the consultation will resume in the New Year and applies to roles that are not required to perform tasks that include working at height, heavy manual handling or work infrequently on or near the network. 

If you have any questions about this email or require any assistance at work, please contact Troy Dunne via email on or on 0419 403 076 or Paul Sansom via email at or on 0409 076 633.