Unitywater EA Update: Who's in charge?!

The Services Union undertook further Enterprise Agreement (EA) negotiations with Unitywater yesterday. The discussions produced the bizarre revelation that Unitywater’s CEO is unable to approve a pay offer – any pay offer – without sign-off from a specially-convened subcommittee of the Board. This situation is further complicated by the Board’s Chairman Michael Arnett being overseas until November!

You’re no doubt as surprised as we are. Unitywater’s CEO is paid just shy of $550 000 annually to run the Council-owned water retailer in one of the country’s fastest-growing regions. Unitywater clearly has a warped sense of priority while you are left to deal with the rocketing cost of living and no pay rise.

Our Union called an early halt to yesterday’s discussions once it was clear that further talks would be pointless. We won’t reconvene until Unitywater finds itself in a position to table a pay offer, which of course won’t be until the Chairman can be located and the subcommittee convened. With a CEO unable to make decisions, and a Chairman missing in action, you’d be forgiven for asking who’s actually in charge at this point.

In the meantime, we can work through where we’re up to regarding your claims concerning RDOs, Long Service Leave at half pay, part-time hours and fitness for work. However, time is running out with your current EA set to expire on 23 December.

If you work with someone who is not yet a member, there has never been a better time to remind them that an employer with this sort of carefree attitude to your pay is unlikely to offer a decent package without some serious encouragement. The best encouragement is a strong union, and joining is easy online at www.theservicesunion.com.au/join.

Above: The ASU is the union fighting for workers at Unitywater