Analysis by the TWU shows that rates in the new agreement are at a minimum up to $8.50 per hour lower than rates under the award, which will result in millions of dollars being stolen from the company’s 3,000 workers each year.
The vote on a new agreement follows a Fair Work Commission rejection last August of a 2017 Aerocare enterprise agreement because of low rates and split shifts.
“What this new agreement will mean for Aerocare staff is continued wage theft and continued struggle. This company which has been exposed over staff forced to sleep at airports behind baggage belts and in their cars is seeking to impoverish a new generation of workers with its substandard agreement. Aerocare is the poster child for ripping off workers and gaming the system in aviation. Airports and airlines are allowing it to happen as they are ultimately benefiting financially,” said TWU National Secretary Tony Sheldon.
The new agreement, like previous Aerocare’s agreements, includes:
- No more than 60 hours guaranteed a month (no weekly guarantee)
- Below award rates for weekends, Good Friday, Christmas, etc
- Split shifts, which are precluded under the award
Aerocare’s vote is expected to be conducted again on the company’s internal online system, which has been reported as acknowledging not only staff members having voted but their voting preference. Similarly to last year’s ballot the vote is not expected to be transparent and will not involve an independent overseer. These methods of conducting an enterprise agreement vote are in stark contrast to how other aviation companies process votes.
“Aerocare’s business model is based on silencing workers and preventing access to representatives. We expect a climate of fear to again surround this vote with staff intimidated and prevented from voicing opposition. It is shocking and disturbing that the Federal Government has publicly supported this company instead of taking it to task for ripping off its staff and preventing them from speaking out. The rules clearly need to change to stop companies being facilitated in doing this,” Sheldon added.
Aerocare last year was exposed after footage showed staff were forced to sleep at airports. Since then more information has emerged including:
- High injury rates among staff. At Sydney International Airport there were 132 injury incidents among a staff of 326 over a one-year period.
- Security incidents, including passengers at Perth airport allowed airside to collect their baggage after a baggage handler was left alone to unload an entire aircraft
- Staff being forced back to work while still injured
- Aerocare managers accompanying injured staff into doctors’ surgeries during appointments
- Broken and faulty equipment in use around aircraft and passengers
Click here for info on Aerocare breaches: http://www.twu.com.au/aerocare-breaches/