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PN Bulk EA- update 26

This week the parties progressed negotiations on the operation of the proposed facilitation / consultation clause. We also discussed the RTBU’s claims regarding scope and labour hire. It was resolved that further work needed to be done by each party’s legal teams to look more closely at the finer details of the facilitation clause to ensure we create a legally sound process. The focus then was directed to working on some of the other matters.

Days in Lieu (DIL)
After much deliberation, the parties agreed on parameters for DIL days. Subject to overall agreement, the approach for the clearance of DIL days will be as follows;
• For Forecast and Zone Rosters, your DIL day will be a 24-hour period as per the start time of your forecast roster or Zone on the date applied for.
• For Blank line rosters you can apply for a DIL to start from either
o 12 noon to 12 noon, or
o 2400 to 2400

Further discussions will take place regarding the notification requirements for DIL days.

Bulk Classification Structure
Bulk management have proposed the introduction of a mentor role, elevation of the Driver Trainer rate, aligning classifications to AQF competencies, and automatic progression of some roles. They have also proposed reviewing the Terminal Operator Classification Structure. While we see some positive moves here there is still work to be done and it was agreed a further workshop meeting would be set up before the next bargaining meeting and after Terminal Operators had been consulted.

Application of Lift up and Lay Back
Your Negotiation team has consistently raised the issue of how lift up in Bulk and lay back in both Coal and Bulk is currently being applied, and that it has been increasingly used as a rostering tool rather than as it was intended for, which was the early or late running of the originally rostered job. We have highlighted the negative impacts that this has on members’ ability to balance their work and personal lives, plan for family commitments, and manage fatigue. We have insisted that some guidelines be developed and included in the enterprise agreement to address the problems surrounding lift up and lay back. There was mutual understanding from both sides of the difficulties and issues associated with lift up and layback, and that this is a strongly felt issue among the workforce because of its impact on work / life balance. It was resolved that two separate Bulk and Coal workshops will meet with Planning to set out train crews’ concerns and views regarding lift up and lay back, and work through the issues before the next bargain meeting.

Permanent Part Time Annual Leave Deductions
This matter was extensively discussed with agreement to further discuss with concerned members. In principle agreement was reached that PN would speak with affected members regarding their IFAs, with a view that deductions for annual leave would reflect the time that the worker would have worked during the period of leave. Whilst we will await the finer details of this proposal, it would ensure that annual leave deductions actually reflect a worker’s pro-rata annual leave entitlement.

Next Meetings
The next Negotiation meeting will be on 18 and 19 August at North Sydney.

Members can be assured that should reasonable progress not be made at the workshops and the next bargain meeting we will not hesitate in advising PN of restarting protected action. It was made very clear to management at this week’s meeting that members want to see progress and are prepared to initiate further action if progress is not forthcoming.

Download the update here.