February 22, 2024


The TWU says a $1.25 billion underlying half-year profit at Qantas is a kick in the guts to illegally sacked workers now facing more Federal Court hearings after the airline walked away from compensation talks at the end of last year.

The half-year results show Qantas is on track to achieve another obscene full-year profit. The minor reduction on last year’s record profit wasn’t driven by investment in staff or the business, but by bringing back capacity after price-gouging the public.

It’s been three years since 1700 illegally sacked workers lost their jobs, but they are yet to receive a dollar of compensation. Federal Court hearings will commence on 18th March.

On 28th February, the District Court of NSW will also determine penalties on Qantas for illegally targeting a health and safety representative during the pandemic.

Over 15 years, Qantas under Alan Joyce systematically splintered and outsourced the workforce across 38 different entities, making aviation jobs low-paid and insecure.

Service standards, customer satisfaction and brand value have plummeted after a mass exodus of skilled workers, with airports struggling to fill part-time, low-paid jobs.

TWU National Secretary Michael Kaine said obscene profits have become the norm on Qantas results days, but corporate excess at the expense of workers, passengers and the public mustn’t be normalised.

“Just two months after Qantas abandoned talks to reach a fair compensation settlement with illegally sacked workers, these results are a reminder of the corporate greed that has turned Qantas into a husk of its former self.

“There may be a billion bucks in the bank, but at what cost? The good name of the national carrier trashed, passengers price-gouged, and workers thrown on the scrap heap. It just goes to show that money is far from the only measure of a successful business.

“This profit must be reinvested into the airline and the workforce. The announcements today are as hollow as the promises have been over the last six months – a shiny façade for planes and apps while the core problems of decimated jobs and service remain.

“A $500 staff travel voucher does nothing to reward workers or address chronic understaffing and illegal outsourcing. Only when good secure jobs are brought back to aviation will quality service and return on investment for passengers be possible.

“At upcoming compensation hearings for illegally sacked workers, we need to see genuine remorse from Qantas and a willingness to quickly and appropriately pay for the devastation caused, without further delay tactics.

“Another massive profit announcement while workers and passengers are suffering is further evidence we need to restore balance in aviation through a Safe and Secure Skies Commission.”

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