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Media Release – Combined Rail Unions and ARTC to meet

Aug 8, 2016Media releases News

The combined rail unions (RTBU, ASU, ETU, and Professionals Australia) and the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) will meet on Tuesday after discussions with ARTC CEO John Fullerton over the weekend.

Focused on resolving the dispute the combined rail unions offered to postpone their planned work stoppage on Monday if Mr Fullerton agreed to visit Newcastle to meet with the negotiating team on the ongoing dispute. Mr Fullerton has agreed and as a result Monday’s stoppage will not proceed.

Rail, Tram and Bus Union NSW Branch Secretary, Alex Claassens said that the combined rail unions have always been focused on reaching a reasonable agreement with the ARTC, but unfortunately no acceptable offer has been put forward to date.

“The unions had not wanted it to come to this, but unfortunately the ARTC has continued to refuse to put forward any reasonable offer. We cannot accept an agreement that would send the pay and conditions of our members backwards and leave them exposed in the case of privatisation.

“We look forward to the meeting with Mr Fullerton on Tuesday and welcome his willingness to visit Newcastle to sit down with us.

“We want to see an end to this workplace stoppage for the people and businesses of the Hunter, so that freight can flow and that rail passengers can get on with their week.”

Mr Claassens said the ARTC’s previous pay offer was not reasonable and that members were still deeply concerned about the impact that potential privatisation of the ARTC would have on employee’s wages and conditions.

Protections for employees’ wages and working conditions needed to be reflected the new enterprise bargaining agreement.

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