We have some good progress to report for USU members at Qantaslink in relation to the continuing EBA talks. The Union would like to thank our hardworking bargaining representatives, Vanessa Cooper, Joanne Sinclair and Cath Sumpter, and welcome a new member of the Union team, Fabian Vergara.

Pay and allowances including shift allowances, will be discussed at the very end of the process, once other entitlements are negotiated. We thank you for supporting your bargaining reps during this process.
In relation to progress made from the USU log of claims, we can provide the following updates:

  • Reclassification – Union preparing submissions to the employer now, the Union thanks the hard working Union members who are contributing to this effort as bargaining representatives;
  • Redundancy – we are working with the employer to develop improved consultation procedures;
  • Public holidays – the Union members identified that this clause of the Agreement required clarification, both parties are working well to improve the draft wording;
  • Domestic and family violence – there is still progress to be made in improving the support for affected staff wherever possible. The Union still holds the view that the Agreement is the right place to recognise this important safeguard for Qantaslink workers who need it;
  • Parental leave – we are working towards gender neutral language so that all employees can have equal access to the benefits available. Higher duties, meal breaks, higher duties and secondments – we are progressing well in negotiations; and
  • 10 minute tea break for shifts up to five hours – the Union is confident that a positive outcome can be negotiated in this case, and it will be a win for members to have it formally established.
    All other topics not covered in this bulletin are the subject of continuing negotiations and updates will be provided wherever progress on other matters is achieved.

Extra news from EBA meeting on Thursday 27 June
The Union and employer bargaining representatives were joined by Trent Petterson from Workforce Planning. Access to Workforce Planning support and resources can help Qantaslink and members to:

  • Reduce split days off – the Union continues to support the avoidance and elimination of this issue wherever possible
  • Enable shift swapping – The Union strongly encourages this positive measure and it benefits both parties as it reduces unplanned absences
  • Provide advanced notice for rosters, trying to harmonise rostering and approval of leave and where possible seek the chance to be rostered off before and after holidays.

Workforce planning is in talks with Qantaslink and any proposal for a future established relationship would require a decision by senior group leadership. The Union hopes that whatever the company decides, our members ultimately get access to the tools and resources that will make members’ positive suggestions a reality. In the meantime, formal recognition of these objectives through the bargaining process will advance their eventual progress towards implementation, after which members can use flexible approaches with management to fix problems and save everyone time and trouble.