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The Cat’s Out of the Bag at Hinchinbrook Shire Council

Local Authorities May 7, 2021

Hinchinbrook Shire Council submitted a Request for help to make a Certified Agreement to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission late yesterday afternoon.

This action proves what our members have known all along – what Council tells the public and what they do in practice are at complete odds.

Over the last week we have seen Mayor Ramon Jayo make misleading statements to the public in the local media by stating that we were seeking backpay of 2.5%.

And now, given Council’s application to the commission yesterday afternoon with absolutely no attempt to come back to the negotiating table, it appears the CEO’s statement to the local media of being open to “reasonable discussions” was misleading.

Council’s unwillingness to return to the negotiating table is terribly disappointing for staff whose only desire was to have Council treat them with respect and locally negotiate with them as opposed to telling staff they can take or leave their offer.

On the topic of backpay, it is important to remember that during COVID North Queensland Councils willingly agreed to pay back wage increases in the form of either administrative arrangements or negotiated outcomes to ensure staff were not negatively affected by the pandemic and economically worse off.   We would expect Hinchinbrook Shire Council staff were equally no worse off as their NQ council counterparts.

The Services Union will be continuing with our protected actions to send a message to Council that our members want to be treated with respect, and, that they have had enough of the bullying, third-rate, stand-over tactics that have been used repeatedly by this Council.

Now is the time support each other. If you have not participated in our protected actions so far, we strongly encourage you join your colleagues at our next protected action. Our next steps will be communicated by your local delegates early next week.  We also strongly encourage you to ask your colleagues to join if they are not members.

If you are not yet a member of your Union, sign up (https://www.theservicesunion.com.au/member-information/join/), join us and take a stand.

The bigger the membership – the stronger the voice.

Now is the time to stand and join the collective.

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