Fair Work Ombudsman Finally Acts on Jetstar/Qantas Crewing

Release date: 3/04/2012

The announcement that Jetstar/Qantas is facing legal action from the Fair Work Ombudsman for contravening workplace laws by engaging Australian based trainee pilots on New Zealand contracts surprises no one familiar with the workplace agenda of senior management. That’s according to Tony Sheldon, National Secretary of the Transport Workers’ Union.

Tony Sheldon commented: “I welcome the decision by the Fair Work Ombudsman to take legal action against Jetstar/Qantas management for employing pilots working in Australia on New Zealand contracts. Anyone with even a passing knowledge of the agenda of senior management at Jetstar/Qantas is aware that they are wedded to an ideology of offshoring, outsourcing and underpayment. The Ombudsman’s case further states that Jestar/ Qantas management attempted to withhold tens of thousands of dollars of wages by forcing pilots to pay for their own training and not paying superannuation.” 

“Management at Jetstar/ Qantas has once again been caught red handed exploiting their workforce. Late last year the Senate heard sworn testimony from numerous staff speaking as to the conditions at Jetstar. One such employee, Ms Monique Neeteson- Lemkes told the committee ‘I am here because I believe Jetstar uses unsafe rostering practices. These unsafe practices lead to fatigue, which in turn increases risk in flights... Thai air crew are definitely flying within our domestic network.’”

Tony Sheldon concluded: “Yet again Qantas will be forced spend money to protect Jetstar for its contempt of Australian law. Senior management are determined to pursue an ideological agenda that undercuts their existing staff. They are determined to engage in a race to the bottom on pay and conditions for their staff, whist rewarding themselves far, far in excess of what they deserve.”


For further information, please contact:  Barry Dunning, Press Officer, TWU, Tel: 0408 463 199, email: 


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