The USU/ASU has been making sure that Virgin Australia won’t go to compulsory redundancies before all other alternatives have been explored.

In our last update for USU/ASU members circulated on Friday, 3 April 2020 we informed you that through successful consultation with Virgin Australia, the Company would start a new round of expressions of interest for voluntary redundancies (‘the EOIs for VR’) at airports. This was because they didn’t get enough EOIs the first time around.

2 and 7 April EOI process
We made it clear to Virgin Australia that if they are serious about a VR process, they would need to consider allowing workers with higher payouts to take redundancy even if it means retraining or promoting other staff. This is just common sense!

EOIs were reopened for all Guest Services employees covered by the Virgin Australia Ground Crew Agreement 1018 (‘the EBA’) and closed at 5.00pm last Tuesday, 7 April 2020. Employees who had put in for redundancy in the first round (due on 2 April) would also continue to be a priority for offers of redundancy.

VRs will be successful if you formally nominate today
The Company confirmed today that 137 employees applied for a VR by 2 April and a further 20 employees confirmed their interest by 7 April 2020.

Virgin Australia have confirmed this morning that they will pay the full notice period to those who nominate for VR. While they will not be able to generate new redundancy quotes by today’s 5pm deadline, this will be included in your final payment.

Virgin Australia announced this morning that they will be accepting ALL EOIs – should a team member who has expressed interest in a VR formally nominate for a redundancy your nomination will be successful – For 2 April EOIs, if you have not already formally nominated for your VR you must do so TODAY.

Given a number of team members have indicated they are anxious to know the outcome of their formal nominations already sent to Virgin Australia, the Company also intend to commence confirming nominations from today (9 April 2020).

JobKeeper Payments and forced redundancies
Your union wrote to Virgin Australia about the JobKeeper payments earlier this week. We also launched a petition and both actions have already had an impact.

Virgin Australia have confirmed that they will commence JobKeeper payments effective from the 30 March 2020 start date and will be re-crediting any annual leave or long service leave that team members have taken since 30 March 2020 as a result of being stood down.

This is a huge win for union members! More details will be sent to USU/ASU members about this in the coming days.

We have locked-in another discussion with the Company tomorrow morning. We will continue to discuss the Company’s position on JobKeeper payments and whether further compulsory redundancies across Guest Services are really necessary right now.

We still need your help
Our petition to Paul Scurrah and the Virgin Australia Group executive asks the Company to to stop forced redundancies in the group.

Sign our petition and join us in calling on Virgin to provide the JobKeeper payment to all staff who they may make compulsorily redundant:

If you still have queries about JobKeeper payments or redundancies, please contact your Organiser today to discuss your concerns.

Also we know this is a very stressful time, do not hesitate to seek assistance if you need it …organisations like Lifeline 131114 or Beyond Blue 1300 224 636 are available if needed.

Remember your USU/ASU is with you every step of the way during this very difficult time.

Your USU/ASU Organiser Thomas Russell can be contacted on 0419 761 320 .