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Agreement discussions continue at Virgin Australia

07 January 2013 By ASU


ASU National Negotiating Team (NNT) had our second meeting with Virgin management in Brisbane on 4th January 2013 to discuss what guest services and contact centre staff want to see in our new agreement.

At this meeting we gave the company the following detailed clauses for our claims:

• Claim 1 - Include industry standards and entitlements.
• Claim 3 - A fair, transparent job selection policy.
• Claim 4 - Supervisors to be included in the Agreement.
• Claim 8 - A fair rostering system including local rostering committees.
• Claim 9 - Annual leave allocation and DIL access.
• Claim 10 - A proper system of breaks.
• Claim 12 - Improved access to jobshare.
• Claim 13 - Increase paid parental leave and provide right to request.
• Claim 17 - Provide better equipment e.g. radios/ computers and improve how we work with passengers requiring a wheelchair.

You can get copies of the detailed claims from your NNT member or Organiser.

What did we talk about?

Your NNT had a good discussion with the management reps. about some of our claims, in particular we discussed issues that had been raised about annual leave allocation and days in lieu (DILs). We have put an alternative position about the payout of DILs - we think that people need more time to take DILs and we need a fair annual leave allocation process and more annual leave lines. We have asked for more details about annual leave pay and loadings, how DILs payouts are calculated and information on sick leave accruals, which we hope to have by next meeting.

The important issue of working with passengers with a disability requiring a wheelchair was also discussed, your reps highlighted the need for better wheelchairs and improved training for guest services staff to prevent injuries. Your NNT believe that staff working with these passengers should receive a special allowance per day.

The management reps did not respond to our claims in the meeting, they said they are going to consider them further and put together a document summarizing all the claims they have received and their responses. Hopefully this will be available soon.

What about the company's classification proposal?

We have received a written document detailing management's proposals for changes to the classification and wage structure in the agreement. Management wants to take trainers at airports out of the agreement and put day of operations planners into the agreement. New planners would be paid at the airport control rate of pay. Existing planners would be "grandfathered" on their current rates and any pay rises would be a lump sum based on the new rates not paid on base pay. We have not agreed to any of these changes, your NNT will be consulting staff about this for feedback before we respond.

The company document raised a number of questions about how staff would move to the new proposal which the management reps couldn't answer at our meeting, we hope to get this information soon and then we will be able to discuss it with members before responding.

What's next?

Our next meeting with the company is on Wednesday 30th January 2013. We will report back again after that meeting. If you have questions or would like to see any of our documents or the Management proposal contact your local rep or NNT member (download the full bulletin below for details).

Best wishes for a smooth transition

We know guest services and contact centre staff have been working extra hard recently learning new skills and procedures, preparing for the transition to the new Sabre system. Your union just wants to add our best wishes for a smooth transition to the new system on 12 January 2013 and the days after.

icon Download the Virgin Australia Bulletin #7 - 7 January 2013

Contact Details
Name: Linda White, ASU Assistant National Secretary
Telephone: 03 9342 1400