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Jul 31, 2014Bulletins RTBU News

Due to surveys done by Sydney Trains that supposedly contain complaints that station employees are not doing their job and being visible to the public Sydney Trains intents to install “PODS” on stations so station employees are more visible to the public.

The Unions have not been provided access to these surveys and these so called complaints.

On Wednesday 23rd July, a meeting was held between Station Employee Delegates, Union Officers and management representatives to discuss the proposal and processes for the installation of PODs as well as the feedback management had received from station employees. At this meeting it was made quite clear that management WILL be installing these PODs. In fact a manager at the meeting stated, “That he did not want anyone leaving this meeting under the illusion that PODs will not be coming.”

When asked by Union Officers for access to the written feedback forms management belligerently refused, stating confidentiality. They even refused to provide the feedback forms that did not contain employee’s name. This belligerent attitude by management only serves to heighten the scepticism of management and their willingness to actually address ALL concerns, even if this means that PODs cannot be installed due to risk assessment supporting employees’ claims of increased safety risks with no appropriate controls in place.

The Delegates raised concerns with management’s proposal having had little if any proper consultation, the risk assessment that was apparently done at Circular Quay on which they base their decision to roll out these PODs. These PODs will place members at an even higher level of exposure to customer initiated violence by limiting and reducing members’ access to a safe place.

The PODs will have members and the equipment exposed to the weather, pollutants, and violent, drunken and disorderly customers. They will also bring with them issues on security of the equipment and what takes precedent, closing and locking the POD or responding to a customer and/or safety issue? All of these concerns were raised with the only response from management being, that they will consider all issues and feedback.

But the overall concern is about the processes to be used for the station specific risk assessments and consultation, the level of consideration of the issues raised in feedback and whether the issues would have any impact on management’s decision to install these PODs.

The Delegates and members have been unrelenting in voicing their concerns for their safety and should continue to raise these safety concerns. All Members should stand up and get involved in their station consultation and risk assessment.

To assist with incident reporting and recording Members should report and record ALL incidents on the RTBU EXPRESS web page http://rtbuexpress.com.au/safeas well as to their management.

Sydney Trains Management, driven by an unrepentant government, has placed customer service ahead of the safety of their employees.

The Union will keep Members advised as to the progress of this issue.

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