Rail, Aviation and Transport

Rail, Aviation and Transport

Member Information Nights

Paul Lister - Thursday, May 22, 2014

The ETU in partnership with EISSNEW Law and RT Health are hosting a number of member information nights across the state commencing in June.

The first four information evenings will be held in NEWCASTLE, the CENTRAL COAST, SYDNEY and WOLLONGONG with a further eighteen meetings scheduled across the state.

ALL members from all industry sectors are invited to come along and hear from your leadership team about the challenges we face including industrial matters, campaigns and the latest developments in Superannuation.

Full details for the meetings in Newcastle, Central Coast, Sydney and Wollongong including times, dates and venues can be found HERE.

A full list of regional locations and dates can be found HERE. Once times and venues have been finalised for these locations we will notify members.

Food and drink will be served. If you wish to attend please RSVP to Joanne Crowder on 02 9267 4844 or joannec@etunsw.asn.au

Meetings With Qantas CEO and Executive Team

Paul Lister - Friday, March 07, 2014

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) and your union held another crisis meeting with Qantas CEO Alan Joyce On Wednesday 5 March 2014  so that he could give us an honest answer on job and wage cuts and take up our offer of working together to ensure a sustainable future for the airline.

Qantas union members have built Qantas and its reputation as the safest airline in the world and Qantas union members want to see Qantas have a successful future. 
So far Alan Joyce and his management team have still not explained why 5000 jobs must go, where and when those jobs will be cut, what alternatives they considered to avoid job losses and they have refused to consult the workforce and their union representatives about options to minimise redundancies.
The executive team will not agree to a Union proposal to appoint an independent expert to analyse the airline’s financial situation to assist in identifying alternative options to the proposed 5,000 FTE redundancies and he has refused to provide any commitments to the job security of Qantas’ remaining 26,000 employees.
Qantas management has also confirmed that they are seeking a wage freeze across the entire workforce including those whose agreements have not yet expired.  Qantas executives stated that even if employees agree to a wage freeze, it will not reduce the number of redundancies nor will it ensure the security of those employees who stay with the airline.
This isn't good enough.

The reality is that there are 30,000 Qantas workers and their families whose livelihoods are at stake.

Australian Unions do not accept that a plan for savage job cuts, which will hurt their hardworking and loyal workforce, is a sustainable plan for the future of Qantas. We will fight for every job and we demand a plan from Qantas that utilises the knowledge of its workforce to shape a better future for our national airline.

We insist upon being a part of a positive plan for growth for the future.

Your union will be holding meetings with members to discuss your views over the next week.
The future of Qantas is something the Australian community and all Qantas members have an important stake in. It is essential that the Australian Government and Qantas management take responsibility for ensuring the sustainable future of our national carrier – one of Australia’s great icons.

Australian Council of Trade Unions and Joint Qantas Unions

Australian International Pilots Association, Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, Australian Services Union, Australian Workers Union, Communication, Electrical and Plumbers Union (ETU), Flight Attendants Association Australia (International & Domestic), Professionals Australia, National Union of Workers, Transport Workers Union, United Voice.


Qantas Sale Amendment Bill Explanatory Memorandum

Qantas Sale Amendment Second Reading (Parliamentary Reading)

Qantas Sale Amendment Bill 2014

Qantas Update 5 March

Paul Lister - Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Following a further meeting with Qantas management the Alliance Unions have arranged meetings for members in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. Please click on the lick below to read the full Alliance update.

Qantas Engineers Alliance Update 5 March.

Qantas Update 4 March

Paul Lister - Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Unions recently met with Qantas management following the announcement of 5,000 job losses. The ACTU is taking on a leading role in facilitating negotiations. Further to the ETU update circulated last week following the meeting below you will find a joint statement on the meeting issued by the ACTU.

ACTU Joint Statement.

Following the meeting with management ACTU Secretary, Dave Oliver wrote to Alan Joyce with a number of questions, this correspondence can be found below.

Dave Oliver letter to Alan Joyce dated 3 March.

If any ETU members have questions please feel free to direct these to Matt Murphy from the ETU National Office or Brad Currey at the ETU NSW Branch office.


Qantas Management Resolute On Destroying Aussie Jobs

Paul Lister - Friday, February 28, 2014

Following yesterdays announcement Matt Murphy, ETU National Industrial Officer today met with senior Qantas management - his report back from the meeting is below.

the main points arising out of todays meeting are as follows:

  • Management will not negotiate on the 5000 Full Time Equivalent (FTE) job losses, which actually means more than 5000 people when casual, part-time and job share positions are considered;
  • Management will proceed to attempt a wage freeze by putting a variation to our current agreement to a vote of employees;
  • Even if employees vote to accept a wage freeze management will still proceed with shedding 5000 FTE jobs;
  • The cuts to LMO, especially in Sydney, are in addition to, and not part of, the 5000, and;
  • There are no further indications as to where the 5000 FTE will come from.

Basically, Qantas management, meaning the CEO and board, are trying to split Qantas up and are fully committed to obtaining changes to the foreign ownership provisions of the Qantas Sale Act.

If they are successful with changes to the act, they will, as soon as possible, offshore the overwhelming majority of their aircraft and component maintenance.

I also need to say to you that the CEO and Board are among the very worst employers in this country. Hard line right-wing and in lock step with the current conservative government.

It's also worth mentioning, however, that pound for pound, the Virgin loss of $84M is worse than the QF result.

The ETU, AMWU and AWU, along with the ACTU will fight for every single job by continuing to hold Qantas management responsible and I have, as early as yesterday, told Qantas that we will not entertain a wages freeze, at all. The CEO and Board seem determined to destroy Qantas as we know it.

It's very apparent to me that a line has been crossed here; we are, potentially, at the beginning of a massive confrontation. As I said yesterday on the ABC, once these jobs and skills are gone, they will never come back; they are gone forever. I can only hope that all the Unions, under the umbrella of the ACTU, stick together and fight this. Your Union, the ETU certainly will.

We have some options, including legal action to enforce the provisions of our EBA, and more importantly, campaigning on the ground; this will evolve over the next couple of weeks in discussions with you and members of the other Alliance Unions and the ACTU.

We are again meeting with management next Tuesday, after the LMO Consultation.

It is clear to me that it is extremely important for Qantas workers to be part of their union, now more than ever. If you are not a member of your union I suggest you take action to protect yourself and your job and the best way to do this is by joining your union. If you work in an area covered by the ETU you can Join Online.

If you have any questions or feedback, please ring me on the mobile at any time.

In unity,

Matt Murphy
ETU National Industrial Officer

Age of Entitlement Continues with QF Management

Paul Lister - Thursday, February 27, 2014

Qantas’ announcement of 5,000 jobs being cut and wage freezes across the business as part of their push for a taxpayer-funded debt guarantee confirms that the ‘age of entitlement’ is alive and well for corporate Australia, according to the Electrical Trades Union.

The union, which represents hundreds of Qantas maintenance workers around the country, said that while government assistance for major industries wasn’t new, this deal would mark the first time a company was rewarded for slashing thousands of Australian jobs.

ETU national industrial officer Matthew Murphy also warned that the real motivation for seeking changes to the Qantas Sale Act was to allow thousands more jobs to be sent overseas.

“Changing the Qantas Sale Act will do little to attract foreign investment — years of mismanagement has seen the company downgraded to junk status — but it would end the legal requirement for the company to maintain many maintenance jobs in Australia,” Mr Murphy said.

“This is the real game plan, with thousands more jobs likely to be sent overseas on top of the 9,000 positions already slashed during the tenure of Alan Joyce.”

The ETU said today’s announcement would have impacts on maintenance staff across Australia, including:

  • component maintenance in Melbourne and Sydney, due to 50 aircraft being deferred or sold;
  • heavy maintenance in Brisbane due to the retirement of Boeing 767-300s;
  • a restructure of line maintenance in Adelaide, Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne; and,
  • a proposed wage freeze, including an attempt to axe previously-agreed wage rises.

“Contrary to the claims of the Abbott Government that the ‘age of entitlement’ is over, we’re seeing multibillion dollar taxpayer support rewarding the largest private sector employer in the country for slashing Australian jobs and cutting wages,” Mr Murphy said.

“Worse still, it has been made extremely clear to the company that receiving a taxpayer-funded debt guarantee from the Federal Government is tied to their efforts to cut wages and conditions — which includes an attempt to modify current workplace agreements to cancel previously-agreed pay rises.

“This is a far cry from previous government assistance, including from the Howard Government, which was always tied to assurances that jobs such as heavy maintenance would remain in Australia.”

Mr Murphy said there would also be impacts on the flying public, with the high maintenance standards on Qantas aircraft likely to suffer from fewer workers and increased offshoring of work.

“Qantas has traded for decades on its high safety standards, but these standards will inevitably suffer if there are fewer maintenance workers and more heavy maintenance is moved overseas,” he said.

The ETU will meet with Qantas management tomorrow in Sydney.

QANTAS: Lowery Hits ‘GO’ On Offshoring

Paul Lister - Friday, January 24, 2014

Since its first flight in 1971, Qantas Engineers have maintained the B747 to the highest of standards. As of
Tuesday - this will no longer be the case.

In November 2013, the company announced that the Avalon facility would no longer undertake the base
maintenance of the 17 remaining B747 jets. Following that decision, a discussion was initiated about where the maintenance would go to next.

The Alliance Unions pursued vigorously to have the base maintenance of the B747 fleet undertaken in either Sydney or Brisbane. In our view, this would strengthen existing employment numbers and potentially create additional employment over the next eight years, until the last jets retire from the fleet in 2021.

It’s important to note that it was abundantly clear that your management did not have the appetite for either option from the outset. Our last meeting with the company took place on December 18 in the Sydney training center. At this meeting, we requested that information be provided to show where the gaps are in the skills required to undertake this work, and indeed if any exist. We also asked what capex is required to modify existing infrastructure to perform the maintenance.

Your management refused to produce this information.

Further, we requested that the company look into what modifications could be made to the existing fleet
maintenance schedule to accommodate the B747 maintenance – a task that is routinely done. Again, they
refused this request.

On Tuesday afternoon, Tony Lowery wrote to the Alliance Unions to say that the Sydney, Brisbane and
Melbourne options were too hard and that he has hit the offshore button.

This decision is lazy and shortsighted.

The Alliance Unions have made it known publicly that this is the wrong decision – and we will continue to
do so. If you share this view, you too should make your voice heard.


As you know, the company has nearly completed the roll out of the EOI’s for redundancies across the
engineering workforce. This is in an attempt to open up positions for those soon-to-be-redundant Qantas
workers finishing up at Avalon.

The EOI is not an opportunity for the company to release more engineering jobs! The Alliance believes a
worker should only be released if that position is to be backfilled by someone else.

We don’t need your managers offloading any further jobs on top of what they already have. This position
will be reiterated strongly to your management in the coming days.

If you would like to discuss these matters further,
please don’t hesitate to contact your local delegate in the first instance, or
your State and National Officials.