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The RTBU met with Aurizon representatives today, Wednesday 22nd August 2018 as a result of the RTBU contacting the Company following last weekend’s protected industrial action.
At the start of the meeting today, your RTBU Negotiating Committee advised Aurizon of their disappointment that Aurizon had indicated to their employees that the RTBU have not been available to meet in an attempt to resolve the outstanding issues.
The fact of this is that the RTBU wrote to Aurizon on 28th June 2018 indicating that we were willing to keep the lines of communications open and as a result a meeting was organised and held on the 9th July 2018 following our depot tours.
On 13th July 2018 Catherine Baxter, General Manager Coal Operations wrote to Bob Hayden Divisional Secretary stating the purpose was to escalate the outstanding matters in an effort to reach an agreement. Bob wrote back to Catherine indicating our willingness to meet on the condition that the negotiating committee was present and that it was not conditional of withdrawing our PAB application. We did not receive correspondence in response to this letter.
On Monday 20th August 2018 Newcastle Organiser Steve Wright rang Greg Dixon to set up a meeting for this week to see if the parties could broker a deal, and it was agreed that the parties would meet on Wednesday 22nd August 2018 at 10am.
Your negotiating committee met with Aurizon negotiators at 10.15am and left the building at 10.22am. Aurizon negotiators opened the meeting by stating:
– That they will not meet in the future with the Your Negotiating Committee whilst ever there is a threat of Industrial Action, and
– Requested that the Your Negotiating Team and Aurizon co-write a letter regarding the In-cab camera and that this be taken back to members for approval.
Your negotiators highlighted to Aurizon that we have discussed the issue a number of times with our members and they have told us in no uncertain terms that the words must be within the Enterprise Agreement and that a letter outside the agreement is unacceptable.
Members have made it clear that Aurizon’s insistence to a side letter is actually flagging their intent to introduce in-cab cameras and audio during the life of the agreement, irrespective of any side letter and that if the Company is telling the truth then why not include it in the EA and seek to bargain it out next EA.
Aurizon negotiators then walked out of the meeting, and as this happened we indicated that we would speak to our members on Saturday at the Peaceful assembly for further instructions.
No other issues where raised during the meeting.
This article first appeared on locoexpress.com.au
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