Svitzer`s operating contract expired in December 2019, but continues to expire under the Fair Work Act, so employees` high wages and conditions remain unchanged, according to the company. “Svitzer Australia is trying to negotiate in good faith with the unions a new enterprise agreement that will achieve a fair result for employees and ensure that Svitzer is on a sustainable basis to offer rewarding careers and services from critical smugglers across Australia.” Svitzer Australia was largely unwilling to enter into meaningful negotiations on a new enterprise agreement after the previous agreement expired,” said Ian Bray, MUA Deputy National Secretary. The Maritime Union of Australia said the Fair Work Commission had granted the union the right to hold the vote. Svitzer Australia employs more than 1,000 people who carry out more than 50,000 port tug jobs in Australia each year, according to data from the company`s website. The enterprise agreements negotiated by AIMPE with maritime employers are listed below. Trade union actions can take the form of a series of measures such as work stoppages, overtime bans and temporary changes in working practices. “Despite this decision, we are committed to continuing negotiations in good faith with workers and unions.” “At this stage, Svitzer is unclear as to what form the proposed trade union action will take, and any trade union action depends on a vote by MUA members to approve the measure and the communication of concrete action to Svitzer.” Most of the enterprise agreements negotiated by AIMPE are reserved for engineers. This is the result of AIMPE`s policy of negotiating separate agreements. Separate agreements mean that only engineers can vote on the conditions applicable to engineers.
Prior to the COVID-19 assault, Svitzer was in the middle of negotiations on the National Enterprise Agreement (EA). The company took advantage of the pandemic to its advantage, as most large companies have, and decided to stop the negotiations and began to change the conditions of Svitzer by attacking the POPs (port management). Svitzer has introduced a document containing 30 assertions that has effectively destroyed all the conditions of the Union over the past century. It is certain that such a reaction will bring Svitzer back to the table and do the right thing for their workers who worked around the clock and sacrificed for their business through a pandemic. “Instead of conducting real negotiations, the company made an offer that would have imposed pay cuts for the next two years.” In general, AIMPE members covered by an EA never need to consider any of the Modern Awards. However, employees who are not covered by an EA may be required to refer to the terms of the bonus. These distinctions set the legal minimum wage and conditions for all maritime workers in the six sectors of the maritime industry cited: 240 ballots were distributed to Svitzer employees throughout the country. 195 postal votes were returned. Voters gave a “yes!” almost unanimously.
AIMPE represents Marine Engineers, which are employed by a large number of employers throughout Australia. One of THE most important tasks of AIMPE is to help members as negotiators negotiate enterprise agreements. Where possible, the AIMPE official responsible for a company/sector will seek the assistance of delegates during the negotiation process. The company operates more than 100 vessels and serves 28 ports and terminals in Australia and PNG.