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Union escalates disruptive strike action at airports

September 16, 2016 Headline News No Comments Email Email

egtmedia59The Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) is dramatically escalating airport strikes and stoppages to ramp up its three-year-old industrial dispute with the Australian Government.

The union yesterday notified Immigration and Border Force of extensive rolling stoppages – including at international airports. The stoppages will begin on 26 September 2016 and continue until 2 October, with further action planned.

CPSU members will take their most intense and widespread strike action to force a resolution to a dispute that has run for more than 1000 days.

The union advises that 30-minutes strikes will be available to CPSU members all day, every day.

“The CPSU expects multiple short strikes to cause significant disruption and delays,” a statement confirmed.

CPSU National Secretary Nadine Flood said: “This will be strike action on a major scale, an unprecedented escalation to make Government finally do something to end this 1000-day dispute.

“The Turnbull Government and the department have done absolutely nothing to fix this mess that they created. In fact for thousands of Border Force officers the latest offer was even worse than the dud deal 81% of the Department’s staff rejected in March.

“Immigration and Border Force staff have compromised and continue to be willing to accept something sensible, but they won’t and can’t accept losing important rights and conditions for a pay rise of just on 1% a year, let alone the pay cuts still being pushed on many of these workers.

“Based on previous experience this strike action has the potential to cause more significant disruption and delays for international air passengers and others, but it’s important to emphasise that our members don’t take industrial action to inconvenience the public. They do it because it’s one of the only tools they’ve got to fight for a fair deal.”

While the new round of strike action will be on a larger scale than any before, numerous exemptions remain in place to ensure national security and the safety of the public.

“Our members would never take action that would compromise that, despite the misleading and contradictory statements of the department and the Government in the past,” Flood said.

“The Government has a clear choice. It can sit down with us, drop the cuts and try to resolve the dispute in good faith, or it can exercise its rights through the Fair Work Commission. If the Government tries again to have our industrial action suspended by the Fair Work Commission, we will argue it’s time to terminate this bargaining charade and have the independent umpire arbitrate an outcome.”

Edited by Peter Needham

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