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Freight Rail Redundancies Unnecessary

May 20, 2014Loco Express

Up to seventeen workers from across five NSW locations are being told they will be made redundant this week as Pacific National continue to pursue their agenda to casualise the work force, said the Rail Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) today.

RTBU National Secretary Bob Nanva said the redundancies from Werris Creek and Narrabri depots, with more at Moss Vale, Parkes and Cootamundra. They are the first of over 160 redundancies being made nationally, many forced.

“Pacific National are laying off workers despite forecasts of freight growth which are set to double over the next 20 years,” Mr Nanva said.

“We are not convinced that the redundancies are genuine and not actually just a back-door attempt at casualisation of the work force.

“Pacific National are refusing to provide any detail to back up it’s claims that fewer workers will be needed in the future, especially given the company’s own forecasts for growth.

“While there has been a short-term cyclical downturn in wheat due to weather conditions, this does not justify a long-term structural change to the business that will see many people lose their jobs.

“We’re calling for Pacific National to come clean on the true state of its books.

“These redundancies are devastating for workers and their families but more broadly will have a negative economic impact in the regional communities in which they live.

”Pacific National has a responsibility to workers and these regional communities to be up front about the reasons for their actions.”

RTBU NSW Secretary Alex Claassens called on Pacific National to stop making any redundancies until a dispute is resolved about the consultation process.

“The RTBU believes Pacific National is in breach of their Enterprise Agreement and lodged a dispute with the company on 13th May which remains outstanding,” Mr Claassens.

“Redundancies need to stop immediately until this is resolved.”

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