ARTC EA Update – Vote Result Report
A vote of 486 Australian Rail Track Corporation employees on the Enterprise Agreement received a majority yes vote, by just 18 votes.
As a result of the vote, members are to return to normal work practices now. All bans and industrial actions are ceasing. We are endeavouring to notify members across the state asap.
We wish to acknowledge the strength and solidarity of the members of the Combined Unions in fighting for a better deal. You sacrificed a lot to stand up for yourselves and your fellow workers.
The union will continue to fight hard in upcoming EA negotiations for other ARTC workers to deliver stronger job protections for our members.
Fear mongering and pressure from ARTC and the federal government put employees in an unfair position.
ARTC has been rewarded for demonising workers publicly and running a misinformation campaign for weeks – even calling on the Federal Government to pressure workers into signing a dud deal.
In the end, their tricky tactics worked.
Unions have been fighting to enshrine into the EA a number of policies that face being stripped away should ARTC be privatised.
This vote mattered because a number of the conditions that ARTC workers enjoy now are not part of the enterprise agreement and only exist in changeable workplace policies that will disappear if the government goes ahead with the privatisation of the company.
The union calls on ARTC to publicly confirm that all conditions and entitlements will be protected in any restructure or privatisation.
These negotiations were also marked by the unprecedented and extraordinary intervention by two Federal Government Ministers, and shows that they will do anything to ensure their plans to fatten up the ARTC goose to sell it off for $4 billion aren’t stopped.
It is clear that the Federal Government is petrified about the impact of these negotiations on the possible sale value of ARTC, sending Employment Minister Michaelia Cash and Transport Minister Darren Chester into the scrum to protect the company and put pressure on workers.
In light of the result the combined rail unions will now meet and seek legal advice to ascertain what options may be available to them so that they can continue the fight to protect employee entitlements.