Rail Tram and Bus Union Queensland Branch
 
 
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Enterprise Agreement Survey

Attached is a survey form relating to your next Enterprise Agreement negotiations for your perusal, completion and return to the RTBU State Office. You will note that there are some categories missing from this survey form which would be contained in agreement surveys in normal circumstances but this is due entirely to the fact that the Newman Government has legislated that some significant workplace conditions which have traditionally belonged to QR workers must not be contained in Enterprise Agreements.

Some of the conditions banned from being part an Enterprise Agreement, through legislation, are:

employment security
contracting out
Union encouragement provisions

Matters such as no forced redundancies/no forced relocations are excluded from being contained in an Agreement under the employment security provision ban.

Notwithstanding this, members should be aware that a number of issues including the no forced redundancies and no forced relocations, as well as consultation on workplace change, can (and are) still included in QR policies. The difference is that there is no control to prevent such provisions from being withdrawn at any point.

However, the RTBU and other Unions are at the present time pursuing the removal of such conditions through a High Court challenge based the argument that Queensland Government could not unilaterally transfer QR workers from a Federal Agreement to a State Agreement given the structure of Queensland Rail.

Unfortunately, this is a lengthy and significantly expensive exercise but the Union will pursue it as the rights of our members are too important not to attempt to protect them in every available manner.

In the meantime, the Union will continue to operate under the current Legislation and will be seeking to negotiate with QR for a new Agreement as soon as possible.

There are some obstacles in this respect at present which we hope will be removed shortly particularly relating to further Legislation passed by the State Government which disallowed any negotiations on Enterprise Agreements in the State system to occur until after there was a review of the overall award.

We hope to be in a position to provide you with a timetable in relation to negotiations of your Agreement in the near future. In the mean-time, it is important that we have a clear indication from our members about the issues they are currently most concerned about pertaining to the Agreement within the workplace.

Unity is Strength

Owen Doogan
State Secretary
Queensland Branch