The USU is pleased to report that since our call for a stop work meeting last Thursday, the USU has held some positive discussions with the City of Newcastle CEO.

A joint statement has been resolved as detailed below. Overall, the Union is pleased to report, Council has acknowledged the impact of their recent actions, furthermore, has now provided a commitment to work with the USU collectively to find solutions to these matters and comply with the intent of the Enterprise Agreement:

Joint Statement: – City of Newcastle CEO / United Services Union – (Resolved 2.10.19)

City of Newcastle (CN) CEO Jeremy Bath and representatives from the United Services Union met on 30th September 2019, to discuss various concerns raised by the United Services Union regarding the treatment of employees recently impacted by workplace change processes within the IT Service Unit and several other industrial concerns.

During these discussions there have been some considerable differences but also close to several resolutions. All parties have remained committed to finding solutions that everyone can support, because it is critical to remain in control of these important matters.

The CEO has acknowledged the need for CN to improve this situation and also acknowledged that CN did not meet the expectations of the affected employees in relation to people management on this occasion.

CN is now working collaboratively with the USU to strengthen existing processes that support workplace change. Furthermore, the CEO offered to extend an apology on behalf of the organisation to the employees impacted who felt disrespected by the manner their redeployment was communicated to them. CN has proposed a review of its processes and communication regarding workplace change in collaboration with the USU.

As a result of this meeting some important steps will now be put in place to further assist these employees as part of the redeployment program, with the support of their Union representatives, as we think that it will be good for both Employees and CN.

This will also improve the way we engage on these processes in the future to ensure effective communication with employees and their Union, to assist mitigating any adverse effects of workplace changes. This also includes the review of the redeployment processes to ensure employees are fully aware of the structure, strategy, timeframes and designed outcomes.

The CEO has again reaffirmed the shared vision along with the United Services Union the redeployment program is to be structured and based on genuine actions and timeframes.

In accordance with Clause 40.2 of the City of Newcastle Enterprise Agreement 2019, the redeployment program is designed to:

· Provide employment security for our employees;
· Involve you in organisational change; and
· Provide genuine training and support to assist in gaining alternative employment

Most importantly, the parties have agreed to continue these discussions to ultimately resolve all current outstanding industrial matters and the continual endeavours of building a positive and productive industrial relationship to benefit all employees of the City of Newcastle and the broader community.

The USU membership will meet on Thursday 3rd October 2019 (12 noon) to discuss these positive developments.

Action Required: All members are again invited to Unite and attend the USU stop work meeting today at 12.00pm Noon at No:1 Sportsground to discuss these positive developments. CN work vehicles can be utilised and the travel time to and from the meeting is in paid time, however, the meeting is intended to coincide with your lunch break and time spent at the meeting is unpaid. It is anticipated that the meeting will have an approximate 30 minute duration.

The Union Services Union, your Union will protect your jobs and ensure that Newcastle Council is held accountable to the EA. This is another great example of how being collective gets results!

Not yet a member? Want to be part of a united collective who will protect you? Contact your local USU Delegate or USU Organiser on 0419 761 323 / to join today!