Aurizon intermodal announcement
Aurizon’s announcement that it will close its non-Queensland Interstate Intermodal operations has come as a shock. At no point has Aurizon indicated to the RTBU that this decision was in the winds. While we have been taken by surprise, the priority must now be ensuring that all members are protected over the coming months, and that as many workers as possible are able to transition to other jobs.
What the announcement means
Aurizon has indicated that it intends to:
- Sell its Queensland Intermodal operations to a consortium consisting of Pacific National and Linfox;
- Sell its Acacia Ridge terminal and assets to Pacific National; and
- Close the remainder of its Intermodal depots outside Queensland.
Enterprise Agreement negotiations
As you may be aware, the RTBU sought a Majority Support Determination from the Fair Work Commission to force Aurizon to the bargaining table to negotiate the next enterprise agreement.
This application was commenced prior to Aurizon’s announcement. Now that we know the operations are being shut down, there is no need for a new agreement – despite us having forced Aurizon to agree to bargain. Our focus is therefore on ensuring Aurizon meets its obligations under the existing EA.
Redeployment & Redundancy
For members in NSW, Victoria, SA and WA, we will now commence consultations with Aurizon over opportunities for members to be redeployed within the broader Aurizon business. Aurizon has forecast strong growth in haulage volumes in its coal business, so we will be demanding that Aurizon demonstrate any redundancies are genuine, and every attempt has been made to explore redeployment options before considering redundancy.
Your Union will be organising a series of depot meetings across the country to discuss this situation, and to ensure everyone is kept up-to-date with our discussions with Aurizon. More information about depot meetings will be provided soon.
Authorised by A Barden, Assistant National Secretary