United magazine Summer 2019

The official journal of the United Services Union

The official journal of the United Services Union


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U nited<br />

Official journal of the <strong>United</strong> Services Union • <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong><br />


NEWS:<br />




SEE PAGE 2<br />

<strong>2019</strong><br />


also inside<br />

AWARD 2020 - WE’RE READY<br />





<strong>United</strong> is the official journal of the <strong>United</strong> Services Union<br />

Editor USU General Secretary Graeme Kelly.<br />

Print Post: 100007536<br />

To contribute to <strong>United</strong> please contact USU<br />

Manager Administration and Finance Erik Jansen on<br />

(02) 9265 8211.<br />


President: Glen McAtear<br />

Vice President: Sharon Sewell<br />

General Secretary: Graeme Kelly<br />

Treasurer: Ross Crawford<br />

Alby Bordignon, Raffaele Catanzariti, Carl Cleaver, Larry<br />

Freeman, Katie Gillen, Arthur Jenkins, James Koval,<br />

Bernardo Lynch, Michael Maggioros, Stephen Mulholland,<br />

Natalie Piggott-Herridge, Jim O’Malley, Annamaria<br />

Saglimbeni, Thao Tran, David Walsh, Jeff Wearing<br />


Level 7, 321 Pitt St, Sydney, 2000<br />

Phone: 1300 136 604 • Fax: (02) 9261 2265<br />

Support Team: 1300 136 604<br />

Email: united@usu.org.au • Website: www.usu.org.au<br />


Manager Administration and Finance: Erik Jansen<br />

Manager Metropolitan: Steve Donley<br />

Manager Energy, Utilities & Private Sector: Peter Campise<br />

Training Officer: Narelle Rich<br />

Legal Special Projects Officer (Metro): Daniel Papps<br />

Legal Special Projects Officer (Metro): Sean Szabo<br />

Metro Organisers: Joel Conomos, Sue Kealy, Sandie<br />

Morthen, Irene Nair, Shane Pinter, Bill O’Kell, Zoe O’Rourke<br />

Energy, Utilities, Private Sector & Airlines: Emily<br />

Callachor, Troy Dunne, Michael Jones, Melissa Pond,<br />

Clare Raffan, Thomas Russell, Paul Sansom<br />

Support Team: Karen Avery, Jenny Chen,<br />

Melissa Coros, Jeny Skutnik<br />


Northern Branch<br />

Newcastle Office:<br />

cnr Lawson & Tudor Streets Hamilton 2303<br />

Ph: (02) 4962 1444 • Fax: (02) 4962 1758<br />

Manager North: Stephen Hughes<br />

Organisers: Luke Hutchinson, Shane Evans<br />

Industrial Officer: Noel Martin<br />

Port Macquarie Office:<br />

1/157 Gordon Street<br />

Port Macquarie 2444<br />

Ph: (02) 6584 7787<br />

Fax: (02) 6584 6924<br />

Organiser: Damien Welsh<br />

New England Office:<br />

1/226 Goonoo Goonoo Road<br />

South Tamworth 2340<br />

Tel/Fax: (02) 6771 4911<br />

Ph: (02) 6771 4911<br />

Fax: (02) 6771 4911<br />

Organiser: Mark Hughes<br />

Southern Branch<br />

Wollongong Office:<br />

Suites 1-3 100 Market Street Wollongong 2500<br />

Ph: (02) 4226 4784 • Fax: (02) 4227 6951<br />

Manager South: Gary Vann<br />

Organisers: Rudi Oppitz, Aarron Vann<br />

Industrial Officer: Stuart Geddes<br />

Central West Office:<br />

Shop 11-12<br />

142 William Street<br />

Bathurst 2795<br />

Ph: (02) 6334 4825<br />

Fax: (02) 6331 2834<br />

Organiser: Shane Reece<br />

Murray Office:<br />

Unit 7, 54-56 Fitzmaurice St<br />

Wagga Wagga 2650<br />

Ph: (02) 69317990<br />

Fax: (02) 6931 7271<br />

Organiser: Darren Wait,<br />

Jed Lawton<br />


Assistant National Secretary:<br />

Robert Potter<br />

Northern Office:<br />

Shop 2, Mid City Arcade<br />

57 Prince Street<br />

Grafton 2460<br />

Ph: (02) 6643 5299<br />

Fax: (02) 6643 2799<br />

Organiser: Wayne Orton<br />

North Western Office:<br />

PO Box 1811<br />

2/46 Church Street<br />

Dubbo 2830<br />

Ph: (02) 6881 6766<br />

Fax: (02) 6881 6816<br />

Organiser: Jamie McKinnon<br />

Riverina Office:<br />

Suite 8<br />

165 Lachlan Street<br />

Hay 2711<br />

Ph: (02) 6993 1419<br />

Fax: (02) 6993 1419<br />

Organiser: Brian Harrington<br />

ACT Office:<br />

3/289 Canberra Avenue<br />

FYSHWICK, ACT 2609<br />

Organiser: Poni Ravula<br />


In a great triumph for people<br />

power the Government’s<br />

union-bashing bill has been<br />

defeated in the Senate!<br />

Members will no doubt<br />

be aware of the so called<br />

“Ensuring Integrity Bill” that<br />

the Morrison Government<br />

tried to push through<br />

Parliament. Workers said no<br />

and the Senate listened!<br />

Congratulations! As I write this column,<br />

the Ensuring Integrity Bill has just<br />

been defeated in the Senate. Rank and<br />

file union members who emailed, rang<br />

and met with the cross benchers and<br />

persuaded them to vote against the bill<br />

should be very proud.<br />

This bill directly attacked union power in<br />

an attempt to diminish your rights.<br />

I am proud of the thousands of USU<br />

members who contacted Senators and<br />

explained how damaging this bill would<br />

be. The vote defeating the Ensuring<br />

Integrity Bill is a victory for all working<br />

people in this country.<br />

I also want to acknowledge and thank the<br />

Labor Party, the Greens, Jacqui Lambie<br />

and Pauline Hanson’s One Nation for listening<br />

to our members and defeating this<br />

bill.<br />

The debate made me think about the<br />

word “integrity” because it seems to me<br />

that Mr Morrison does not know one<br />

thing about the integrity of the thousands<br />

of USU members across NSW and<br />

the ACT - or about the team of committed<br />

unionists who represent them.<br />

Integrity is standing by your mate who<br />

has lost his or her job.<br />

Integrity is knowing that by being a union<br />

member you make a fairer workplace for<br />

ALL workers.<br />

Integrity is saying no to bad bosses who<br />

commit wage theft and leave their workers<br />

out of pocket.<br />

Integrity is contacting politicians even<br />

when we were told all was lost and<br />

persuading them to stand by workers.<br />

I could go on and on about the integrity of<br />

the members of the <strong>United</strong> Services Union<br />

but I also want to say a word or two about<br />

the members who go that extra mile – the<br />

delegates on the front line, the branch<br />

committee members who contribute to<br />

the running of our great union and importantly<br />

to the democratically elected rank<br />

and file executive who make decisions<br />

about how our union is run.<br />

These are people of integrity! For many<br />

years I was Vice President to Stephen<br />

Birney who worked tirelessly for the<br />

members of this union and put their<br />

needs above his own – members will<br />

agree that Stephen is a man of integrity!<br />

I now have the great honour to be<br />

President of our union and serve with<br />

Sharon Sewell and Ross Crawford who,<br />

like myself and other members of the<br />

executive, are rank and file members like<br />

yourself. A union run by union members.<br />

Our union also has the great fortune to<br />

have a General Secretary of outstanding<br />

integrity who, coming from local government,<br />

knows what it is like to be a member,<br />

a delegate and an official serving<br />

the members. When Graeme Kelly was<br />

awarded his OAM this year it was because<br />

of his commitment to the USU and<br />

the community.<br />

This is a great moment for us all. We<br />

know the Government will try again - but<br />

we are strong and we are ready!<br />

Glen McAtear<br />

President<br />

<strong>United</strong> Services Union<br />

2 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


I don’t need to tell members<br />

the labour movement has had a<br />

tough year but we have ended it<br />

on a high with the defeat of the<br />

Morrison Government’s “Ensuring<br />

Integrity Bill” - something we can<br />

all celebrate!<br />

The loss of the NSW and Federal elections<br />

were setbacks for working Australians.<br />

In NSW we have a government<br />

determined to privatise everything - from<br />

buses to roads – despite an unequivocal<br />

commitment from Gladys Berejilkian that<br />

there would be no more privatisation if<br />

her government was re-elected. So much<br />

for that promise!<br />

Federally we have a government whose<br />

main obsession seems to be taking away<br />

the right of Australian workers to be<br />

protected by their union.<br />

I join President Glen McAtear, in applauding<br />

the thousands of members who<br />

spoke to cross bench senators and persuaded<br />

them to vote against the EI Bill.<br />

Despite record low wage increases, wage<br />

theft rampant and big banks and big business<br />

making record profits, Mr Morrison<br />

chose to focus on reducing the ability of<br />

workers to fight for a better future.<br />

It seems he has his priorities back to<br />

front. The defeat of the bill is a great win<br />

for working Australians.<br />


This reminds us how strong we are when<br />

we stand together. Now is the time to<br />

urge your fellow workmates to join the<br />

union because that is the way we will stay<br />

strong and get even stronger.<br />

On behalf of the USU<br />

Executive and staff, USU<br />

President Glen McAtear and<br />

General Secretary Graeme<br />

Kelly wish all members<br />

and their families a safe<br />

and happy Christmas<br />

and a successful 2020.<br />

“I see this journal<br />

full of strong, united<br />

and passionate<br />

USU members -<br />

whether at protests,<br />

meetings, picnic<br />

days or conferences<br />

and this makes me<br />

full of confidence<br />

for the future.”<br />

- Graeme Kelly<br />

Every day when I go out to the branches<br />

and meet members, I am encouraged because<br />

I meet people of real integrity who<br />

are out there fighting for a better future.<br />

I talk to members who are worried about<br />

the workplaces their children and grandchildren<br />

will inherit however they are not<br />

content to sit on the sidelines and give<br />

up – they are determined to stand side<br />

by side and protect jobs, wages and<br />

conditions.<br />


There may have been setbacks in <strong>2019</strong> but<br />

there have also been moments of incredible<br />

success for members of the USU.<br />

Take a few moments to read our journal<br />

or visit our website and you will see<br />

that every day we are active - and we<br />

are winning. Our energy members at<br />

Essential did not give up until the government<br />

called off redundancies at Essential<br />

Energy (page 9).<br />

In local government we have members<br />

winning at Liverpool, Merriwa, Broken<br />

Hill, Kiama and Newcastle just to name<br />

a few and across our private sector and<br />

airlines branches we are seeing growth<br />

in membership following a determined<br />

recruitment campaign by our organisers.<br />

I see this journal full of strong, united and<br />

passionate USU members – whether at<br />

protests, meetings, picnic days or conferences<br />

and this makes me full of confidence<br />

for the future.<br />

AWARD 2020<br />

We are facing heavy negotiations in 2020<br />

for a new Local Government Award but<br />

I know we are in good hands with our<br />

negotiating team, just as we are in good<br />

hands with our governance with a great<br />

team and renewed executive.<br />


I congratulate Paul Reid on winning the<br />

prestigious McKell Award (page 6) and<br />

Steve Birney, Ron Hunt and Greg Scott<br />

for being awarded with Life Membership<br />

of our great union (page 25).<br />


On a sad note the USU family sends our<br />

condolences to the family and friends<br />

of our ASU National Secretary David<br />

Smith who passed away unexpectedly on<br />

22 November. David was a giant in our<br />

movement and will be sadly missed.<br />

I look forward to 2020 and being by your<br />

side as we work together to ensure a<br />

better, brighter future.<br />

Graeme Kelly OAM<br />

General Secretary<br />

<strong>United</strong> Services Union<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 3



On Monday 18 November <strong>2019</strong> at the City of Sydney’s Council meeting<br />

the Councillors discussed the proposal to contract out Waste Services<br />

to private contractor Cleanaway. Affected waste employees were in<br />

attendance in hopes that the Council would reject the proposal and<br />

protect their careers. The USU has challenged the Council vote.<br />



On 13 November waste services workers<br />

at the City of Sydney walked off<br />

the job in response to management’s<br />

refusal to consult with them over a<br />

proposal to outsource household garbage<br />

collection to a private contractor<br />

without an open tender process.<br />

The Councillors were provided with<br />

some information from the USU and<br />

employees of the City of Sydney about<br />

potential inaccuracies in the costings<br />

provided in the report that went to the<br />

Councillors. They were also told of the<br />

fears and anxieties of existing staff about<br />

what would happen to them, where they<br />

would be placed and what kind of work<br />

they would end up doing. Several of<br />

the Councillors expressed their concern<br />

about whether they had received correct<br />

and accurate costings and data in the report.<br />

They also expressed their concerns<br />

around the need to alleviate the anxieties<br />

and concerns of the current employees<br />

before any decision was made.<br />

In light of this a motion was put by Deputy<br />

Mayor Linda Scott to defer the voting on<br />

the proposal to allow for further consultation<br />

to occur between the affected<br />

employees and council. The CEO of the<br />

City of Sydney, Monica Barone, spoke<br />

out against this motion. She informed<br />

the Councillors that the City of Sydney<br />

Wages/Salary Award 2017 did not allow<br />

for Council to consult with its staff unless<br />

a definite decision was made. She<br />

said that because of this clause it would<br />

be futile to defer as the City would not<br />

Deputy Mayor Linda Scott, pictured with<br />

members, put forward a motion to defer<br />

the voting on the proposal to allow for<br />

further consultation to occur between<br />

the affected employees and council.<br />

be allowed to engage in any consultation<br />

discussions with the affected employees<br />

until the Councillors had made the decision.<br />

A few of the Councillors were concerned<br />

that this did not seem practical or<br />

logical and wished to discuss the matter<br />

in confidence. The matter was discussed<br />

in confidence then a decision was made<br />

that the motion to defer could not be<br />

put to Council to vote on as it would be<br />

in contravention of the Sydney Wages/<br />

Salary Award 2017.<br />

The Union did not agree with this interpretation<br />

and raised the matter in the<br />

Industrial Relations Commission the next<br />

morning with Chief Commissioner Kite.<br />

Chief Commissioner Kite agreed with<br />

the Union that clause 12.1 did not prevent<br />

the Council from consulting. As<br />

such, it would appear that Monica Barone<br />

had misinformed the Councillors during<br />

the meeting on Monday 18 November.<br />

This means that the motion may have<br />

been thrown out because of misleading<br />

information provided by Monica Barone<br />

to the Councillors.<br />

We will keep members informed of the<br />

progress of this dispute.<br />

Almost 100 waste services staff voted<br />

to immediately stop work after<br />

management refused to answer their<br />

questions or undertake genuine consultation<br />

regarding the proposal to<br />

hand over the work to private contractor<br />

Cleanaway.<br />

Workers had been seeking meetings<br />

with management for several weeks<br />

in an attempt to resolve the dispute,<br />

before being told that they would not<br />

have their questions answered.<br />

The USU believes the outsourcing<br />

proposal is deeply flawed and has<br />

caused a great deal of uncertainty<br />

among the City of Sydney’s loyal<br />

workforce.<br />

“Workers are concerned by this plan<br />

which would see a private contractor<br />

take over all household garbage<br />

collection across the city without an<br />

open and transparent tender process<br />

or expressions of interest,” USU<br />

General Secretary Graeme Kelly said.<br />

“Workers spent weeks seeking a<br />

meeting with management to discuss<br />

this proposal, and when it finally<br />

took place they were simply told their<br />

questions would not be answered and<br />

no negotiation would be entered into.<br />

“Waste services workers felt they had<br />

been left with no choice but to stop<br />

work in an effort to force the City of<br />

Sydney to undertake genuine consultation<br />

with them.”<br />

4 • <strong>United</strong> Winter <strong>2019</strong>

AWARD 2020:<br />


USU Manager North Stephen<br />

Hughes reports on the 2020<br />

NSW Local Government Award<br />

negotiations.<br />

Negotiations for the next Award commenced<br />

in August <strong>2019</strong>. The USU was<br />

prepared to commence with our log of<br />

claims from 1 July <strong>2019</strong>.<br />

The Employer’s Association (LGNSW)<br />

and the other two industry unions were<br />

not ready until September <strong>2019</strong>.<br />


The USU put its first Award update out<br />

to our members in April <strong>2019</strong> calling for<br />

submissions from members. As a result<br />

we drafted a log of claims with 44 separate<br />

claims.<br />

Around a dozen of these will require<br />

evidence to proceed should they be rejected<br />

as expected by the Employer’s<br />

Association.<br />

USU Officials and Delegates have been<br />

provided with evidence claim forms for<br />

individual Award clause claims so as to<br />

gather and present our evidence in a<br />

professional and consistent manner.<br />

A deadline of 1 February 2020 has been<br />

given for evidence to be returned.<br />


The USU has been drafting and circulating<br />

Award updates regularly (every<br />

2-3 weeks) since August. These updates<br />

have focused on individual specific attacks<br />

on existing Award rights and entitlements<br />

contained within the employer’s<br />

association log of claims.<br />

We also drafted and circulated petitions<br />

opposing the claims to increase the 35<br />

hour week to 38 and another opposing<br />

the claim to remove existing Award barriers<br />

to the seven day working week.<br />

While we have received many responses<br />

to the petitions and in particular the<br />

35 to 38 hour week petition, it is disappointing<br />

to see at this time, 5 November<br />

<strong>2019</strong>, that we have not received petitions<br />

from every Council.<br />

We will be reviewing why this has occurred<br />

with our officials and discussing<br />

with the relevant local USU Delegates to<br />

identify any reasons.<br />

It is interesting to note that the Employer’s<br />

Association drafted and adopted a<br />

very important industry document<br />

called the NSW LOCAL GOVERNMENT<br />

WORKFORCE STRATEGY 2016-2020.<br />

This document includes many positive<br />

comments and objectives which seek<br />

to make NSW Councils as employers<br />

of choice, to attract and retain quality<br />

staff, addressing skills shortages, transitioning<br />

older employees into meaningful<br />

jobs that are appropriate for their health<br />

and wellbeing and to accommodate<br />

work life balance requirements of employees<br />

as well as many other positive<br />

comments and strategies.<br />

Unfortunately the LGNSW Award committee<br />

which is made up of a couple<br />

of dozen HR officers and a few General<br />

Managers either didn’t read the strategy<br />

or don’t care about it.<br />

Nothing in the log of claims that they<br />

submitted for the negotiations seeks to<br />




Have you been receiving your<br />

member updates? We send<br />

updates to every member with<br />

an email record to ensure you<br />

are fully informed about the<br />

issues that matter with your<br />

Award negotiations.<br />

Simply go online to usu.org.au/<br />

members-only where you can<br />

securely update your details or<br />

contact our membership team<br />

on 1300 136 604.<br />

achieve the aims and strategies within<br />

their own organisation’s strategy.<br />

In fact they do the exact opposite.<br />


Finally we had some in HR and Senior<br />

Management claim to their workforces<br />

early this year that non-union members<br />

would get a say on the Award.<br />

This is a total fallacy unless the nonunion<br />

members had input into the final<br />

version of the Employer’s Association<br />

Award log of claims which does nothing<br />

to improve the pay of conditions of<br />

Council workers covered by the Award<br />

but which seeks to reduce or remove<br />

numerous hard fought long term existing<br />

rights and entitlements.<br />

Non-members can show their opposition<br />

to the attacks on their conditions<br />

and rights by signing our petitions and<br />

should consider joining, as only the<br />

three unions have brought anything to<br />

the negotiations which will retain and<br />

improve existing rights and conditions.<br />

Non-union members will not be<br />

getting a vote on the proposed<br />

Award when negotiations conclude<br />

in mid-2020.<br />

<br />

USU@WORK<br />




Join today.<br />

1300 136 604<br />

<strong>United</strong> Services Union Update • 8 April <strong>2019</strong><br />

that negotiations of the Local Government (State) Award are set to begin later in<br />

the year.<br />

only union members are able to have their say.<br />

only union members will have an opportunity to participate throughout the<br />

process.<br />

The Local Government (State) Award is an agreement between the industrial unions and NSW<br />

Local Government Association.<br />

If you want to have your say speak to your USU delegate or organiser about how you would<br />

improve your terms and conditions.<br />



ARE YOU ON FACEBOOK? Follow us @ www.facebook.com/<strong>United</strong>ServicesUnion/<br />

https://www.usu.org.au/join<br />

facebook.com/<strong>United</strong>ServicesUnion<br />

Authorised and printed by Graeme Kelly OAM, General Secretary NSW Local Government, Clerical, Administrative, Energy, Airlines and Utilities Union<br />

Level 7, 321 Pitt St Sydney • Phone: (02) 9265 8211 • Facsimile: (02) 9261 2265 • Email: united@usu.org.au • Website: www.usu.org.au<br />

<br />

USU@WORK<br />

AWARD 2020<br />



35 HOUR WEEK<br />

IS SAFE?<br />

As a result if you change job you lose this condition meaning you are limited on:<br />

✗ Reduced career progression through an inability to change jobs<br />

✗ An inability to change positions<br />

✗ Difficulty to move between full-time and part-time<br />



<strong>United</strong> Services Union Update • 6 September <strong>2019</strong><br />

Just because a condition has been grandfathered for you does not make it<br />

safe. Grandfathering means a condition is only protected in the job you are in<br />

and as part of your EXISTING employment contract.<br />

The 35 hour week has been a long protected condition in the Local Government (State) Award. This is currently<br />

under attack from the employer group who seek to remove this condition and grandfather it for existing<br />

employees. This is clear in the employer’s log of claims at point 10 of 17 which states:<br />

10. Clause 18 A [Ordinary Hours] – Delete Subclause 18A (ii) of the Award so that weekly ordinary<br />

hours of work for all full time employees is thirty eight (38) per week, and grandfather the entitlement<br />

(to a 35 hour week) for existing full time employees only.<br />

If you oppose this claim to remove a 35 hour week for you and future employees, please sign up to our petition<br />

which we will collect from all NSW Councils and which we will present to the employers and also table in the<br />

IRC in stating our vehement opposition to this claim.<br />

ARE YOU ON FACEBOOK? Follow us @ www.facebook.com/<strong>United</strong>ServicesUnion/<br />

Join today.<br />

1300 136 604<br />

https://www.usu.org.au/join<br />

Authorised and printed by Graeme Ke ly OAM, General Secretary NSW Local Government, Clerical, Administrative, Energy, Airlines and Utilities Union<br />

Level 7, 321 Pitt St Sydney • Phone: (02) 9265 8211 • Facsimile: (02) 9261 2265 • Email: united@usu.org.au • Website: www.usu.org.au<br />

facebook.com/<strong>United</strong>ServicesUnion<br />

<strong>United</strong> Winter <strong>2019</strong> • 5





From left to right:<br />

Senator Tony Sheldon,<br />

Kellie Gale, MLC Mark<br />

Buttigieg, Canterbury<br />

Bankstown Councillor<br />

Rachelle Harika, member<br />

for Coogee Marjorie<br />

O’Neill, USU General<br />

Secretary Graeme Kelly,<br />

Canterbury councillor<br />

Clare Raffan, Paul Reid,<br />

member for Canterbury<br />

Sophie Cotsis, Wayne<br />

Moody, Bill Kritharas<br />

and Saree Boutros.<br />

The USU is very proud to announce that on 9th<br />

October, long time MEU/USU Life Member, Paul<br />

Reid was the recipient of a McKell Award at the 20th<br />

Annual NSW Labor Rank and File McKell Dinner.<br />

These Awards were developed to thank members who<br />

have excelled in their service to the ALP and their<br />

local community and for their meritorious service.<br />

Hon. Mark Robert BUTTIGIEG, MLC paid this<br />

tribute to Paul Reid in the NSW Parliament<br />

I make a special mention of my great friend and colleague and<br />

<strong>United</strong> Services Union stalwart, Paul Reid, who recently was<br />

awarded the McKell Award by the New South Wales ALP for<br />

outstanding services to the party. Last week I was privileged<br />

to have been invited to be a guest at his table along with his<br />

partner and Canterbury councillor Clare Raffan, Senator Tony<br />

Sheldon, member for Coogee Ms Marjorie O’Neill, <strong>United</strong><br />

Services Union General Secretary Graeme Kelly, Kellie Gale,<br />

member for Canterbury Sophie Cotsis, Bill Kritharas, Rachelle<br />

Harika and Saree Boutros.<br />

The McKell Award is a prestigious and noteworthy award.<br />

Members must be nominated by several other ALP members<br />

and there was an overwhelming number of worthy nominations<br />

in this instance. Paul’s nomination was supported by<br />

Graeme Kelly, the General Secretary of the <strong>United</strong> Services<br />

Union [USU], and Sophie Cotsis, the member for Canterbury<br />

and shadow Minister for better public services. I could not<br />

imagine a more worthy recipient of the McKell Award. Paul is<br />

honest, loyal, a true believer and a tireless campaigner for the<br />

party. He is an example of the kind of person that the Labor<br />

Party should recognise and should be supporting and promoting<br />

for the roles that they play within the party.<br />

He advances the party’s collective values and he is involved<br />

Paul Reid receiving the<br />

McKell Award from Jodi<br />

McKay and Mark Lennon<br />

for the right reasons: to progress the cause of working people,<br />

not for his own self-interest but for the good of the movement.<br />

Paul is a proud and dedicated member of the USU. He<br />

became an elected Municipal Employees Union delegate in<br />

1984 prior to the unions merging and he has been a delegate<br />

to the union for over 18 years. Paul has been an ALP member<br />

for 36 years, first joining the Pyrmont-Ultimo branch. He<br />

founded the Belfield-Campsie North branch in 2017 and still<br />

serves as its branch secretary.<br />

Paul has held the positions of branch president, branch secretary,<br />

state and federal electoral council delegate, chair of organising,<br />

recruitment and training policy committee, member<br />

of building sustainable communities policy committee, USU<br />

delegate to ALP State conference and USU conference whip<br />

and proxy member of ALP administrative committee. Labor<br />

members of Parliament value Paul’s abundance of knowledge<br />

and his indispensable insight into community issues. Paul has<br />

been tireless in his dedication to the union movement and<br />

the ALP. I am lucky to call Paul one of my great comrades in<br />

the movement and I am a better person for having known this<br />

great human being. I pay tribute to Paul Reid, recipient of the<br />

prestigious McKell Award, and thank him for his services to<br />

the Australian Labor Party.<br />

6 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


A titan of the Australian union movement passes too soon<br />

It is with great sadness that the <strong>United</strong> Services<br />

Union shares the news that ASU National Secretary<br />

David Smith passed away on Friday 22 November.<br />

On behalf of the officials, staff and members of the <strong>United</strong><br />

Services Union, USU General Secretary Graeme Kelly and<br />

President Glen McAtear express our sorrow to David’s family<br />

and friends and pay tribute to David.<br />

David Smith sadly passed away unexpectedly on Friday 22<br />

November <strong>2019</strong>.<br />

David’s respect for others and humility belied his extraordinary<br />

life-long contribution to a better quality of life for working<br />

Australians.<br />

Having started on the shop floor as a clerk at Queensland Rail,<br />

David got involved in our union at a young age. He worked<br />

for ASU members for almost three decades, beginning in<br />

1991, rising quickly to Assistant State Secretary in 1993 and<br />

Queensland Branch Secretary in 2001.<br />

In 2011, David was elected National Secretary with the job of<br />

bringing cohesion and direction to the Australian Services<br />

Union. He did that with great skill and care for his comrades.<br />

David unified the branch leadership behind a vision of a modern<br />

union adapted for tomorrow’s challenges, and his reforms,<br />

service and legacy will endure long into the future.<br />

He helped build an organisation with a culture of progress<br />

and ambition for working people;<br />

and under his leadership, the union<br />

delivered some of the most important<br />

achievements in the movement’s<br />

recent history.<br />

David ran the Equal Pay case in<br />

Queensland in the state commission,<br />

which provided the foundation for<br />

the landmark national Equal Pay case<br />

that saw pay increases of between<br />

23-45% over eight years for social and<br />

community services workers. Under David’s leadership, the<br />

union also delivered the first ever workplace agreement with<br />

provision for domestic violence leave.<br />

David had all the hallmarks of a natural leader; he looked to<br />

the future and was clear-eyed about where he was going, but<br />

he had the ability to bring people with him. He was rarely the<br />

loudest voice in the room, David’s voice nonetheless carried<br />

the most weight.<br />

While David’s leadership and his presence in the union movement<br />

will leave a great hole for many, his wisdom and foresight<br />

will carry us forward long after his passing, such was his<br />

impact on other people and on the culture of the ASU.<br />

David will be missed beyond words and our thoughts are with<br />

his family, friends and comrades at this extraordinarily difficult<br />

time.<br />


On 27th October USU General Secretary<br />

Graeme Kelly and his wife Sally joined<br />

thousands of Sydney-siders in the 7<br />

Bridges walk which raises money for the<br />

Cancer Council.<br />

> On the day of the walk the<br />

Iron Cove Bridge was named in<br />

honour of Graeme’s mum, Eva.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 7

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8 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong><br />

14/11/19 12:08 pm



In July <strong>2019</strong>, Essential Energy, a NSW State Owned Corporation, made an announcement that it would be<br />

slashing its workforce through a proposed 182 redundancies across its Network.<br />

This news came as a massive shock to<br />

members who had already endured its<br />

workforce being reduced by almost half<br />

when over 2000 jobs were cut in the past<br />

4 years and thought that the redundancies<br />

were all well and truly behind them.<br />

Further to this, Essential Energy announced<br />

that they would be reducing the<br />

workforce by 600 workers by 2024, from<br />

3100 to 2500 employees with the first<br />

tranche being the 182 by August <strong>2019</strong>.<br />

Essential Energy employs over 3000 employees<br />

across the State, mostly in rural<br />

and regional NSW where unemployment<br />

is high and the drought is having devastating<br />

affects across many communities.<br />


Many Essential Energy employees, along<br />

with family members - spouses, fathers,<br />

sons and daughters etc. - have worked<br />

across the Essential Energy Network for<br />

a very long time.<br />

The prospect of finding alternative employment<br />

is daunting for many. Families<br />

employed by Essential were worried<br />

about how the job losses might affect<br />

them if both breadwinners were made<br />

redundant at once.<br />

Yet despite this, Essential Energy announced<br />

that up to 600 jobs would<br />

go over the next Australian Energy<br />

Regulatory Period which ends in 2024.<br />

182 of these positions would go by<br />

September <strong>2019</strong>. Essential Energy<br />

blamed the Australian Energy Regulator<br />

“AER” for the decision saying that it was<br />

forced to reduce its Capex and Opex and<br />

that the only way to further reduce this<br />

was to cut jobs.<br />

The USU, along with the other Energy<br />

Unions, swung into action by lodging<br />

a dispute with the FWC due to<br />

Essential Energy not following the provisions<br />

of the Essential Energy Enterprise<br />

Agreement 2018. As a result negotiations<br />

Essential Energy delegates (l to r) Daniel Welsh Port Macquarie, Mark Lenton Broken<br />

Hill, Judy Cutler Port Macquarie, Jason Bartlett Riverina, Ruth Smallwood Port<br />

Macquarie and (front) Leanne New Mudgee worked with members to stop the job cuts.<br />

commenced with Essential Energy resulting<br />

in a longer consultation time of 6<br />

weeks which gave the USU and members<br />

time to work on strategies that would<br />

save jobs.<br />


All USU members were encouraged to<br />

contact their local MPs particularly in<br />

rural and regional areas. This proved a<br />

very effective strategy as the Nationals<br />

MPs in these areas became very concerned<br />

about their own seats given that<br />

the State Government had made an announcement<br />

prior to the election that no<br />

Public Service jobs would be cut.<br />

The USU worked tirelessly with the other<br />

Energy Unions through meetings with<br />

Essential Energy, meetings with affected<br />

members, industrially through the Fair<br />

Work Commission and meeting with<br />

key MP’s to assist in placing this matter<br />

in parliament. While this was going<br />

on union members were continuing to<br />

meet with MP’s in their office to discuss<br />

the devastating impacts these job<br />

losses would have on them and their<br />

communities.<br />

Pressure was mounting on National Party<br />

MPs who started to publicly question<br />

Essential Energy’s decision and when<br />

the State Opposition Leader Jodi McKay<br />

and Deputy State Opposition Leader<br />

Yasmine Catley visited members in Port<br />

Macquarie, amid mounting pressure, the<br />

Deputy Premier John Barilaro publicly<br />

called on Gladys Berejiklian to act.<br />

On the 20th of August <strong>2019</strong> the NSW<br />

State Government notified the Board of<br />

Essential Energy that they must halt the<br />

proposed 182 proposed job cuts.<br />

This win comes as a result of<br />

sustained pressure placed on<br />

MP’s in regional areas affected<br />

by these proposed job cuts and<br />

highlights that through collective<br />

efforts from the Energy Unions<br />

and their members what the<br />

power of Unionism is all about!<br />

While this announcement halts the<br />

tranche of 182 job cuts, to date, no information<br />

has come forward regarding<br />

ongoing job cuts to 2024.<br />

This tells us that this fight is far from<br />

over and we will continue to campaign<br />

to ensure that moving forward, Essential<br />

Energy will not be allowed to unnecessarily<br />

cut members’ jobs!<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 9


This year our EUPS Team (Energy, Utilities, Private Sector and Airlines) co-ordinated a USU team of BRO’S<br />

to grow their MO’S!<br />

We ramped up the campaign by holding a Movember<br />

BBQ on 21 November.<br />

The Movember campaign raises funds and awareness<br />

for all the dads, brothers, sons, cousins, nephews,<br />

grandfathers, uncles and mates in our lives.<br />


Info-cir raising awareness of men's health<br />

Info-cir prostate cancer<br />

Info-cir testicular cancer<br />

Info-cir men's mental health<br />

Info-cir male suicide prevention<br />

As we headed to print we had already raised $1,235<br />

for this important campaign - already exceeding our<br />

goal of $1,000.<br />

Thank you to all those who supported this<br />

great cause by either participating or making<br />

a donation.<br />


@ MERRIWA<br />

USU members at the Merriwa branch of the Upper Hunter Council had a win with overtime<br />

now being paid for the Willow Tree job as well as back pay to 2017. Council has<br />

admitted that they were in the wrong and has said that they will now pay the overtime.<br />

The Delegate Gaynor Blackadder has been a driving force to achieve this outcome.<br />

Pictured from left to right – Members David Hvirf, Michael Deasy, Mark Tudor,<br />

Bernard Constable, Wayne Upward, Keven Sams, Mark Robinson, Andrew<br />

Collins, Doug Porter, Steve Janssens, USU Organiser Leith Barber and Rod Anity<br />

(Delegate Gaynor Blackadder not pictured).<br />

10 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

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Members at the New Zealand<br />

Department of Internal Affairs have been<br />

hard at work this year improving working<br />

entitlements and pay for their colleagues<br />

in Sydney. As yet, an Enterprise<br />

Agreement has not been ratified but<br />

this group of enthusiastic and talented<br />

members deserve praise and congratulations.<br />

It has been a pleasure working<br />

alongside these members and the USU<br />

looks forward to working with them all<br />

in the future!<br />

TOP TEAM:<br />

Left to right: Chanelle Nicholson,<br />

Lasi Lagolago, Paul Hodgson,<br />

Alessia Bergantino-Mitu, Bree<br />

Wyllie & Mons Fata-Meafou.<br />



When Vicki Hodges first joined<br />

the union it was as a member of<br />

the Federated Clerks Union, which<br />

later merged with the Municipal<br />

Employees’ Union to form the<br />

mighty USU. Vicki now works<br />

at Bega Valley Shire Council, so<br />

when it comes to USU history she<br />

has quite a story to tell.<br />

I first joined the union at the age of 20<br />

when I commenced work at General<br />

Motors Holden Dandenong. This was<br />

a very large corporation at that stage.<br />

The plant built Toranas, Commodores<br />

and Isuzu Trucks. The engines were<br />

built at the Fishermen’s Bend Plant in<br />

Port Melbourne. These were the heady<br />

days when Peter Brock was “King of<br />

the Mountain” and we would often see<br />

him around the office. General Motors<br />

was a “closed shop” and everybody had<br />

to be in the union, hence I joined the<br />

Federated Clerks Union. I started as a<br />

Key Punch Operator and worked up to<br />

the position of Supervisor Data Entry. I<br />

had 40 staff on 2 rotating shifts to organise.<br />

I can remember attending Stop<br />

Work Meetings for different issues. In<br />

those days we were docked for those<br />

meetings.<br />

Vicki Hodges<br />

I now work in Local Government at Bega<br />

Valley Shire Council. I am the Indoor<br />

Delegate but I also represent outdoor<br />

staff as well. We have many issues to<br />

deal with in Local Government as we<br />

cover a wide range of jobs and employees.<br />

I am also the Vice President of the<br />

Southern Branch of the USU which I find<br />

very rewarding. I have run the AGM and<br />

General Meetings for the branch in the<br />

absence of the President. I have now got<br />

a good working relationship with many<br />

delegates from the councils in our area<br />

and have made lasting friendships with<br />

some.<br />

I love being a workplace delegate, serving<br />

on Consultative Committees and liaising<br />

with Organisational Management<br />

which is challenging but rewarding<br />

when you have a win. I love telling my<br />

members that we “have their back” and<br />

it will be OK.<br />

I have been on the USU Women’s<br />

Committee for a number of years and<br />

have been Secretary for most of them.<br />

My first Convenor was Clare Raffan. I remember<br />

the day she organised lunch at<br />

Parliament House. I was so excited meeting<br />

Anna Watson and Sophie Cotsis.<br />

Sandie Morthen is our current Convenor<br />

and has encouraged us to step out of<br />

our comfort zone. She is creative and<br />

energetic and is challenging us all to be<br />

better people and stand up for our rights<br />

and those of other people.<br />

I love being on the Women’s<br />

Committee and supporting Women<br />

in the Workplace. I know we will<br />

find more innovative ideas and programs<br />

to support in 2020.<br />

12 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

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<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 13



SIGNED!<br />

The 3 year agreement<br />

is now in place<br />

After 12 months of negotiations<br />

the Liverpool City Council City<br />

Presentation 36 Hour Agreement<br />

was signed at the Liverpool<br />

Council depot on the 29 th October<br />

<strong>2019</strong>.<br />

At the signing CEO Kiersten Fishburn<br />

said, “This is a great outcome for our<br />

Depot staff members. It sets ambitious<br />

but achievable targets and gives<br />

staff certainty about the outcomes expected<br />

of them while retaining the four<br />

day week which makes Liverpool City<br />

Council the employer of choice.”<br />

USU Metropolitan Manager Mr Steve<br />

Donley said, “Liverpool City is a leader<br />

in local government. This agreement<br />

recognises that our members are in<br />

control of their workload and can deliver<br />

to a high standard.”<br />

This agreement has a life span of three<br />

years and will see USU wages members<br />

enjoying a 36 hour, 4 day week into the<br />

future.<br />

The Key Performance Indicators attached<br />

to the agreement were developed<br />

by USU members to ensure they<br />

are achievable and that the agreement<br />

has a long life.<br />

A four day working week allows our<br />

members at Liverpool City Council to<br />

achieve an enviable work life balance<br />

whilst ensuring that Council’s needs are<br />

met.<br />

GREAT JOB!<br />

USU Delegate Brandon<br />

Rhodes watches the<br />

agreement being signed.<br />

“Liverpool City is a leader<br />

in local government. This<br />

agreement recognises that<br />

our members are in control<br />

of their workload and can<br />

deliver to a high standard.”<br />

- USU Metropolitan<br />

Manager Steve Donley<br />

14 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>




A demonstration of collective<br />

strength was on display at the USU<br />

“stop work” members meeting<br />

held on Thursday 3rd October <strong>2019</strong><br />

at Number 1 Sportsground. USU<br />

members resolved a unanimous<br />

vote of ‘No Confidence’ in the<br />

Director People and Culture Fiona<br />

Leatham, Chief Information Officer<br />

(CIO) Paul Dickson and Human<br />

Resources Consultant Amy Smith.<br />

The details of this motion are as follows:<br />

<br />

<br />

The shambolic nature of resolving<br />

the IT restructure process and associated<br />

redeployment processes.<br />

The dramatic effects these processes<br />

have had on USU members due<br />

to the lack of regard of the abovementioned<br />

Managers and Human<br />

Resource Consultant.<br />

Several hundred USU members at City of Newcastle stopped work<br />

as a sign of united strength. Members passed unanimous votes of<br />

no confidence in several senior managers regarding their lack of<br />

regard in treating USU members with dignity and respect. The USU<br />

commends the solidarity of our USU membership!<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

<br />

The perceived underhanded and<br />

disingenuous approach of and undertaken<br />

by the aforementioned<br />

as highlighted in the recent email<br />

exchanges.<br />

The approach of not wanting to<br />

resolve matters with our USU representatives<br />

within appropriate<br />

timeframes.<br />

The trend of Council not acting in<br />

accordance with the EA and looking<br />

to deny members basic EA entitlements<br />

against the overall intent<br />

of the EA.<br />

The dramatic low level of morale<br />

across of the organisation,<br />

especially within the current IT<br />

Department which has developed<br />

since the arrival of the Chief<br />

Information Officer.<br />

<br />

<br />

The continual punitive approach<br />

taken against USU members of the<br />

IT Department.<br />

The lack of transparent engagement<br />

and lack of respectful industrial<br />

relationship being prompted<br />

by the Director of People and<br />

Culture based on the rightful place<br />

of the Union (USU) within the City<br />

of Newcastle.<br />

A second motion regarding the inequitable<br />

industrial arrangements at the Civic<br />

Theatre was also passed unanimously at<br />

the USU members’ meeting:<br />

The collective USU membership<br />

demand significant progress be<br />

made in the ensuing period until<br />

the next USU member meetings<br />

scheduled for 3rd December <strong>2019</strong><br />

on resolving equitable industrial arrangements<br />

for the workers of the<br />

Civic Theatre occur. If no progress<br />

is achieved, the USU members’<br />

meeting arranged for 21st November<br />

will discuss what further action is<br />

required to ultimately resolve these<br />

issues appropriately.<br />

It is pleasing to report the wide range<br />

of members who attended the meeting,<br />

this included members for all functions<br />

of Council as the attendance was<br />

very strong. These matters also received<br />

strong local media interest (TV, Radio<br />

and Print media) with the USU gaining<br />

good promotion exposure from these<br />

engagements.<br />

Due to this collective action, significant<br />

progress has now been achieved<br />

on both these matters / motions, which<br />

also included the resolution of several<br />

matters before the New South Wales<br />

Industrial Relations Commission.<br />

The USU protected members’ jobs by<br />

holding Council accountable to the EA.<br />

This is another great example of how<br />

being collective gets results!<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 15


Branch<br />

members,<br />

including<br />

President<br />

Glen McAtear,<br />

Vice President<br />

Sharon Sewell<br />

and Manager<br />

Gary Vann<br />

congratulate<br />

Ron Hunt.<br />

After 20 years of loyal service<br />

to the USU Ron Hunt of Parkes<br />

Shire Council of the Central West<br />

Branch received life membership<br />

of the union. This award is an<br />

honour for our members and<br />

represents a lifetime of dedication<br />

to the union.<br />

Ron Hunt started work at Parkes Shire<br />

Council as a labourer in 1986 and became<br />

a member of the Municipal Employees’<br />

Union. In 1999 Ron was elected as the<br />

outdoor delegate of the MEU and in turn<br />

the USU, and remained in this position<br />

until he retired from Council.<br />

Ron, as an active delegate, not only engaged<br />

with the Union on the local level<br />

but regularly represented the USU at<br />

state Conference and was heavily involved<br />

in managing and assisting in<br />

campaigns both to support the USU and<br />

as part of State and Federal Election<br />

campaigns and was part of the USU<br />

Award Restructuring and Negotiation<br />

Committee.<br />

He worked to the best of his ability to<br />

provide the best possible representation<br />

for his members through both his<br />

work as a delegate and on Consultative<br />

Committees. During this time Ron was<br />

able to achieve numerous improvements<br />

and above Award conditions for<br />

the members of Parkes Shire Council.<br />

First and foremost Ron has represented<br />

his fellow Council workmates and being<br />

a part of processes that made a difference<br />

in any positive way for hard working<br />

regional families.<br />

Ron has been an exemplary delegate<br />

who has been an asset to the Union and<br />

will be sorely missed and we wish him<br />

the best in his future endeavours.<br />




Following a protracted stand off between Broken Hill City Council and<br />

the <strong>United</strong> Services Union, Council has agreed to implement the industry<br />

recognised policies and procedures for drug and alcohol testing.<br />

Dating back to 2018 Council had originally<br />

proposed implementing a drug<br />

and alcohol policy and procedure that<br />

was far stricter than what is recognised<br />

across the industry. This led to a great<br />

amount of discontent for the members<br />

at Broken Hill City Council and the union<br />

as a whole, with the members passing<br />

several motions against what had been<br />

proposed.<br />

This matter has recently been able to<br />

be resolved following a meeting between<br />

Council’s General Manager and<br />

USU General Secretary Graeme Kelly.<br />

As a result of this meeting Council has<br />

consented to implement the industry<br />

practices on a 12 month basis with an<br />

intended review at the end. This will be<br />

in full consultation with the union. The<br />

implementation includes both the industry<br />

policy and procedure, with a single<br />

variation which is already currently<br />

being implemented by the industry parties.<br />

The change is that periods of leave<br />

will not be considered as part of a compulsory<br />

testing period.<br />

This result is a positive step forward<br />

to rebuilding a conciliatory relationship<br />

between the union and council.<br />

The USU would not have been able to<br />

achieve this success without the tireless<br />

work of our delegate Chris Wellington,<br />

and the efforts being made by the members<br />

as a whole. The union is only as<br />

The USU would not have been able<br />

to achieve this success without<br />

the tireless work of our delegate<br />

Chris Wellington (pictured), and the<br />

efforts made by the members.<br />

strong as its members and without the<br />

support of our members this would never<br />

have been achieved.<br />

16 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>



ACTION!<br />

When taking action is<br />

the only way to be heard.<br />

On 22 August outdoor USU members at Kiama Municipal<br />

Council took the decision to stop work and march on the<br />

administration building in an effort to protect jobs within<br />

the council; fight potential underpayments; and to have a<br />

say against what our members believe is a lack of dignity<br />

and respect in the workplace.<br />


USU members took the<br />

action of calling a stop<br />

work meeting!<br />

Over the past twelve months several matters arose with underpayments<br />

to our members’ wages; the delays or restructuring of positions;<br />

as well as a lack of real consultation over changes and over<br />

concerns regarding pay.<br />

This culminated in council moving to restructure two positions without<br />

consultation – removing a truck driver from the organisation and<br />

replacing them with a labourer. Union delegates made all reasonable<br />

attempts to discuss this matter, and when that was unsuccessful and<br />

the council were not willing to talk, the members took the action of<br />

calling a stop work meeting.<br />

This meeting led to the eventual move by the members to march on<br />

the administration building and stay there for over an hour while USU<br />

officials met with management. The actions of our members forced<br />

the council to the discussion table.<br />

This matter is yet to be resolved and is ongoing as well as several<br />

other matters regarding underpayments. The USU continues to support<br />

our members through these matters. The union is only as strong<br />

as its membership and while we do not encourage industrial action<br />

we will support our members through ongoing disputes.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 17


FREE TO<br />

ALL USU<br />

MEMBERS!<br />

Did you know, that as a <strong>United</strong><br />

Services Union member, you have<br />

completely free access to the<br />

ASU Career Launchpad?<br />

Email us to set up an account:<br />

communications@usu.org.au<br />

18 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


The cowardly abuse and harassment of people who<br />

can’t fight back because they are on the job.<br />

It sounds pretty inappropriate doesn’t it. Well perhaps not in<br />

the way you think, but it is definitely a low and cowardly act.<br />

Sackbaiting is deliberately baiting a person to do something<br />

or respond in a way that will get them sacked. People doing it<br />

often think they’re really brave, sticking it to the public face of<br />

a company or council they’re unhappy with. But there’s nothing<br />

brave about punching down, abusing a worker who has to<br />

be there just so they can earn a living. Most people, because<br />

they need a roof over their head and need to feed their families<br />

will be unable to respond to verbal abuse and threats for<br />

this very reason, and so are forced to put up with humiliating<br />

abuse and suffer in silence.<br />


We’ve all seen it before, some rough customer being sarcastic,<br />

rude, insulting, aggressive or generally obnoxious to<br />

a worker who is on company time. They stand there making<br />

snide remarks, raising their voice, jabbing at the air or even the<br />

chest of the person who is paid to attend to this customer,<br />

who is locked in a miserable dilemma; speak up and risk job<br />

loss, or sit there and cop it sweet.<br />

There is nothing brave about sackbaiting. It doesn’t matter if<br />

you are a customer getting a free kick at a worker or a boss<br />

taunting a team member about their mortgage when they try<br />

to defend themselves, using fear of economic hardship and<br />

even poverty is the low act of a grub. They know what they<br />

are doing is wrong, but they revel in wielding the whip-hand.<br />

Malicious use of complaints and warnings by either customers<br />

or management is another way people get revenge on<br />

workers for just doing their job, and people know this. They<br />

use fear of complaints to get out of parking tickets, get free<br />

upgrades, and generally make a pest of themselves by threatening<br />

complaints that will put workers in hot water.<br />


Members in airlines face this type of customer all the time.<br />

And some bosses use warnings or the fear of warnings to shut<br />

down both dissent and even reasonable discussions. There is<br />

nothing wrong with a well-founded complaint, and warnings<br />

are the proper way for bosses to manage serious misconduct.<br />

But taunting people with unreasonable acts of revenge that<br />

jeopardise their job security is unacceptable. Forcing workers<br />

to live in fear of unwarranted warnings and disciplinary<br />

action is just as bad. Some bosses might not realise, when<br />

they casually throw out the suggestion that someone’s job is<br />

on the line, they’re talking about the person’s home, family,<br />

livelihood. They may go home to a good night’s sleep while<br />

the worker lies awake fearing for their ability to earn a living or<br />

else face the dole queue.<br />

Customers have the right to complain, and bosses have the<br />

right to manage and issue warnings if need be. But taunting<br />

people, using or instilling fear of job loss to score points and<br />

cow people into submission is a miserable way to get through<br />

life.<br />


We need to change the culture from saying the customer is<br />

always right to just saying how about being reasonable and<br />

using a bit of common sense and decency. Managers can<br />

combat vexatious complaints by checking if customer complaints<br />

are really about a job not done right, or just a parting<br />

shot by a client who knew they were in the wrong and just<br />

trying to stir up trouble. Organisations should take it seriously<br />

when anyone uses fear of poverty as a tool of intimidation to<br />

settle office arguments. We should reject any behaviour that<br />

abuses the economic imbalance between a worker and the<br />

employer, that seeks to capitalise on the need to provide for<br />

our household or children by telling the worker their ability to<br />

do so will be put at risk just for speaking up.<br />

It’s true that workers should always be polite and reasonable<br />

to customers, no matter how cranky or irritable they may be.<br />

Sometimes a customer is just having a bad day and they need<br />

to be cut some slack. But this is no excuse to use a worker as<br />

a human punching bag, or mentally left to choose between<br />

silence and Centrelink.<br />

If you see someone baiting a worker and abusing their position<br />

of power over them as a customer or in any other way, speak<br />

up and support that worker, and if you can feel it’s wrong then<br />

say it’s wrong. There’s nothing brave about sackbaiting.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 19

<strong>2019</strong> WOMEN’S CONFERENCE<br />

The <strong>2019</strong> USU Women’s Conference was held in Sydney on the 28th and 29th August <strong>2019</strong>. This is a biennial<br />

event and this year 68 members attended. The theme of the conference was Changing Perspectives and<br />

aimed to present common topics for such conferences in a different light.<br />

‘<br />

The conference was opened by General Secretary Graeme Kelly and the keynote<br />

Wonderful<br />

speaker was Senator the Hon. Kristina Keneally who spoke about her life and career<br />

conference - met<br />

and was a highpoint for many of the attendees.<br />

some amazing<br />

The issue of domestic and family violence was address by author S.M. Matthews<br />

to Sandie. Went<br />

who discussed his novel the Skinny Girl and the true story behind it. The conference<br />

was humbled to be able to show the documentary 9 to 5: the 925 story for the<br />

first time in Australia. This movie addresses the true story of workplace organising<br />

on more and to<br />

that is told in the popular movie 9 to 5. The movie looks at what happens when<br />

women stand up collectively to ensure safe and supportive workplaces.<br />

women. Big thanks<br />

back to work very<br />

invigorated to take<br />

become part of the<br />

women’s group.<br />

The second day addressed strategic planning for the Women’s Committee through<br />

a LEGO: Serious Fun Workshop. One of the suggestions to come out of the workshop<br />

was the creation of a bi-monthly newsletter called USU Sisters. This new<br />

initiative will be launched in February 2020. Keep an eye on your emails and if you<br />

really want to make sure you receive your newsletter contact our Support Team<br />

on 1300 136 604 or at united@usu.org.au to make sure we have your correct email<br />

address.<br />

The conference was rounded out with presentations from ME Bank, Carroll O’Dea<br />

workers compensation lawyers and a great Superannuation Panel which included<br />

Linda White, Assistant National Secretary Australian Services Union, Melinda<br />

Gibson, Client Relationship Manager with Local Government Super and Jodie<br />

Bailey, Chief Customer Officer with EISS.<br />

The USU Women’s Committee worked hard on pulling the conference together.<br />

They brainstormed ideas for presentations and collectively wrote the introductions<br />

for each conference speaker. The committee invested time in working on and practising<br />

their public speaking skills so that each presenter was introduced by a committee<br />

member. For some of the committee members this was something new and<br />

challenging. The USU would like to thank each and every member of the committee<br />

for their efforts in helping to stage the <strong>2019</strong> Women’s Conference.<br />

‘<br />

Well done on<br />

organising a great<br />

conference.<br />

Well done to the<br />

committee members<br />

who stepped up and<br />

did introductions and<br />

votes of thanks.<br />

Kristina Keneally<br />

was amazing!<br />

20 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


<strong>2019</strong> AWARD WINNERS<br />

As at many conferences the conference dinner was a highlight. The dinner was held at the<br />

Queen Victoria Building and was Great Gatsby themed. During the evening two special awards<br />

were given to USU delegates.<br />

It was very<br />

informative,<br />

inclusive and<br />

insightful. I was<br />

so glad that I<br />

was able to be ‘a a part of it.<br />


The Betty Spears Award recognises an<br />

outstanding female delegate from the<br />

Clerical & Administrative or Airlines<br />

Sector. The winner of the <strong>2019</strong> award<br />

was Trish Marinozzi. Trish was nominated<br />

by a male member in her workplace.<br />

In his nomination he wrote: “She<br />

has been an outstanding advocate for<br />

all members of the USU working in our<br />

workplace. Her advice has aided me numerous<br />

times through conflicts within<br />

my own office and she goes to the ends<br />

of the earth to fight for those going<br />

through rough times at work.”<br />


The Edna Ryan Award is awarded to an<br />

outstanding female delegate from the<br />

Local Government, Energy or Utilities<br />

sector. The <strong>2019</strong> Edna Ryan Award was<br />

presented to Anna Kypriotis. Anna works<br />

in a male dominated environment and<br />

received 7 nominations – 6 which came<br />

from men. Some of the comments on<br />

these nominations described her as a<br />

bundle of awesomeness, having outstanding<br />

understanding of union rules<br />

and workplace laws, being diligent and<br />

super helpful. Anna’s organiser describes<br />

her as being a teeny tiny Godzilla.<br />

Right: Senator Deborah O’Neill<br />

presents the Betty Spears<br />

Award to Trish Marinozzi.<br />

Far right: City of Sydney<br />

Deputy Lord Mayor Linda<br />

Scott presents the Edna Ryan<br />

Award to Anna Kypriotis.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 21


Some years ago when USU Manager North Stephen Hughes watched an ABC program about the Veterans<br />

Employment Program it began a campaign to include Local Government in the Program. While some Councils<br />

have embraced the Program many have not. Stephen Hughes explains why it is such an important initiative.<br />

A couple of years ago I saw a<br />

program on the ABC regarding<br />

a story about the Veterans<br />

Employment Program that had<br />

just been established by the<br />

NSW Government with the aim of<br />

assisting and educating Veterans<br />

and retiring Veterans regarding<br />

employment opportunities within<br />

the NSW State Government run<br />

entities, such as police, prisons,<br />

and transport.<br />

LTCOL Ret<br />

Craig Delaney<br />

addressed the<br />

USU’s State<br />

conference in<br />

October.<br />

At the time this was being headed up by<br />

Retired Major Garth Callandar who was<br />

our first casualty in Iraq when his vehicle<br />

was blown up by an IED.<br />

Garth suffered significant injuries which<br />

led to his retirement from the Australian<br />

Army.<br />

I reached out to Garth as I wanted to see<br />

this worthwhile program extended into<br />

NSW Councils.<br />

As an ex-serviceman myself where I<br />

served as an infantry rifleman and forward<br />

scout in 3RAR including overseas<br />

service in south east Asia I had basically<br />

been lucky enough to stumble into a<br />

job in Narrabri Shire Council, initially as<br />

part of the old red scheme in 1984 after<br />

my enlistment period ended.<br />

I had never considered a job in local<br />

government as a career but once I got<br />

the chance I made the best of it.<br />

NSW Councils exist in almost every part<br />

of the state where communities exist.<br />

It provides local services in more vocations<br />

and communities by far than either<br />

the Federal or State Governments<br />

in most communities.<br />

No other employer has the coverage<br />

which can provide a significant range of<br />

employment opportunities to their local<br />

communities, which also include our<br />

deserved Veterans.<br />

The organisational structures of<br />

Councils which include teams, gangs<br />

and departments, in many ways mirror<br />

the structures found in the military<br />

and offer opportunities for advancement<br />

from trainee and entry level right<br />

up to the trades, professions and Senior<br />

Management.<br />

Our Veterans come from every part of<br />

our State and many would want to return<br />

to their communities (particularly<br />

regional) if opportunities for local employment<br />

were available.<br />

Today far too many Australians are ending<br />

up living on the streets and Veterans<br />

unfortunately appear to be over represented<br />

in these circumstances, that no<br />

person in a country like Australia should<br />

ever find themselves in.<br />

After contacting Garth and with the support<br />

and approval of the USU General<br />

Secretary Mr Graeme Kelly, we set<br />

up joint meetings with the Office of<br />

Local Government and the Employer’s<br />

Association (LGNSW) as well as the then<br />

Minister for Local Government’s office.<br />

This resulted in Government support<br />

and funding to develop the program to<br />

include NSW Councils.<br />

22 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

While Garth moved onto new employment,<br />

his role was quickly filled<br />

by the equally committed and experienced<br />

Lieutenant Colonel Retired Craig<br />

Delaney who had served our country for<br />

over 30 years in the military.<br />

Craig quickly went to work with the<br />

Office of Local Government and with<br />

some industry knowledge, input and<br />

assistance from LGNSW (Lillian Tiddy)<br />

and the USU, a document was developed<br />

called the NSW Local Government<br />


This guide includes pictures of existing<br />

NSW Council Workers from Councils<br />

such as Sutherland, Port Stephens,<br />

Dungog, Ballina and Lithgow, almost<br />

all of whom are USU members and<br />

some of whom have been or are active<br />

workplace USU delegates who<br />

have transitioned from their careers in<br />

the Australian Military to careers within<br />

NSW Councils.<br />

The Guide informs Veterans of the types<br />

of vocations that exist within NSW<br />

Councils and provides guidance on<br />

where their military rank would most<br />

likely fit within the vocations and the<br />

Salary Bands and Levels found in the<br />

NSW Local Government (State) Award.<br />

The industry Unions, LGNSW and the<br />

Office of Local Government strongly<br />

support this program, but we ask for<br />

your support to ask your Council what<br />

they are doing to support our Veterans.<br />

Unfortunately with a few exceptions it<br />

would appear that most of the decision<br />

makers in Councils found in Senior roles<br />

in management and HR haven’t acted to<br />

support this program at this time.<br />

It must also be stressed that our<br />

Veterans are not seeking special treatment<br />

regarding employment, they just<br />

want a fair go when they apply for or<br />

enquire about any advertised vacant<br />

position/s, by at least receiving a response<br />

and feedback if their application<br />

is unsuccessful so they know what they<br />

need to address when applying for any<br />

future role.<br />

Surely any Council can at least commit<br />

to this.<br />

In showing the USU’s ongoing support<br />

the USU General Secretary and Executive<br />

invited LTCOL Ret Craig Delaney to address<br />

the USU’s State conference on<br />

Thursday October 24 th <strong>2019</strong> recently.<br />

It was very clear to the over 200 conference<br />

delegates in attendance how<br />

worthwhile the program is and why it<br />

should be supported.<br />

Feedback overwhelmingly referred to<br />

the professionalism, commitment and<br />

empathy as demonstrated in the presentation<br />

by Mr Delaney on behalf of<br />

our Veterans.<br />


For the PDF of the Rank 2 Grade<br />

Guide head to https://usu.org.<br />

au/proudly-supporting-veteransemployment-program/<br />

or visit https://www.vep.veterans.<br />

nsw.gov.au/lg-r2g<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 23

USU CONFERENCE <strong>2019</strong><br />

This year’s Special Conference was held<br />

at the Twin Towers Services Club in Tweed<br />

Heads from 22-25 October.<br />

Presentations and workshops were held giving<br />

conference delegates the opportunity to discuss<br />

campaigning strategies for the year ahead. Unions<br />

NSW Secretary Mark Morey discussed the importance<br />

of campaigning for the rights of working<br />

Australians especially in the light of election losses<br />

both federally and in NSW. Protecting workers<br />

is more important than ever.<br />

Special tribute was paid to Steve Birney who<br />

along with Ron Hunt and Greg Scott was awarded<br />

Life Membership of the USU.<br />

Graeme Kelly<br />


USU Legal Officer Daniel Papps and Lawyer John Hotel: Metro Hotel Marlow, Sydney Central<br />

Payne presented the Rules Consultation and<br />

Address: 431-439 Pitt Street, Haymarket NSW 2000<br />

(Cnr Pitt & Campbell Streets)<br />

Renewal session to delegates and USU Treasurer Phone: (02) 9281 6999<br />

Ross Crawford and Manager Administration &<br />

Finance Erik Jansen along with our Auditors<br />

Mark MoreyKEY SPONSORS<br />

presented the Financial Report. Craig Delaney,<br />

Manager Veterans Employment Program gave a<br />

special presentation (see p. 22-23)<br />


Hotel: Metro Hotel Marlow, Sydney Central<br />

Address: 431-439 Pitt Street, Haymarket NSW 2000<br />

(Cnr Pitt & Campbell Streets)<br />

Phone: (02) 9281 6999<br />




Glen McAtear<br />

Daniel Papps<br />

We were also pleased to have video presentations<br />

from NSW Opposition Leader Jodi McKay<br />

and Shadow Minister for Local Government Greg<br />

Warren.<br />


Check out pages 25-27 for more - we thank all the<br />

delegates for their contribution as well as our sponsors:<br />

Carroll & O’Dea Lawyers; Local Government<br />

Super and EISS and ME Bank.<br />

Add Botany print.<br />

24 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong><br />

Add Botany print.<br />

** Program subject to change without notice



No one who has met Steve<br />

Birney could ever question<br />

his commitment to the <strong>United</strong><br />

Services Union and its members.<br />

The USU is proud to be able to honour<br />

that commitment by presenting Steve<br />

with Life Membership of the USU at our<br />

recent Conference.<br />

A brief summary of Steve’s Life<br />

Membership motion is included here<br />

- full details are at www.usu.org.au/<br />

conference<strong>2019</strong><br />

Steve commenced his employment at<br />

Tweed Shire Council on the 1st of May<br />

1979 as a plant operator and joined the<br />

MEU (now USU) on the same day.<br />

He was elected as an MEU Workplace<br />

Delegate in 1984. He was elected as the<br />

Tweed Shire Council MEU Branch Vice<br />

President in 1984 and then was elected<br />

to the position of Tweed Shire Council<br />

MEU Branch Secretary in 1985.<br />

Steve served on the MEU/USU State<br />

Executive from 1994 until the <strong>2019</strong> elections<br />

where he chose not to seek reelection<br />

as he planned to retire in July<br />

<strong>2019</strong>.<br />


Above left: President Glen<br />

McAtear presents Steve<br />

with his Life Membership.<br />

Above right: Graeme<br />

Kelly thanks Steve for his<br />

lifetime commitment to<br />

the USU. Right: Delegates<br />

thank Steve with a<br />

standing ovation.<br />

In 2003 Steve was also elected to a position<br />

on the National Executive and in<br />

2015 he was further elected and elevated<br />

to the top position of our national<br />

union, the Australian Services Union<br />

(one of Australia’s largest Unions) as ASU<br />

National President.<br />

Steve’s commitment to the MEU, USU<br />

and ASU are of the highest ever standard<br />

and Steve leaves the Union in a far better<br />

position than when he first joined given<br />

his dedication and hard work in the positions<br />

of state Executive member, State<br />

President as well as National President.<br />


Greg Scott has been a long term member and delegate of the <strong>United</strong> Services Union who has<br />

provided countless years of service for the betterment of our members at Wollondilly Shire<br />

Council. Greg originally joined the NSW Municipal Employees’ Union in 1981 at Wollondilly Shire<br />

Council. After a number of years as a Union member in the early 1990’s Greg became a workplace<br />

delegate and was one of our members who helped establish the inaugural Southern Branch.<br />

During Greg’s time as a delegate Greg became the President of the Southern Branch and was<br />

involved in the changeover period during the merger that formed the <strong>United</strong> Services Union.<br />


Greg Scott continues<br />

his involvement with<br />

the USU as a member<br />

of our Retired Members<br />

Club. Find out more<br />

at www.usu.org.au/<br />

conference<strong>2019</strong><br />

Greg has always been a highly active delegate fighting for the rights of our members. Following<br />

the loss of several allowances in the State Award, Greg was able to successfully fight and ensure<br />

that some of these allowances are still paid at Wollondilly Council today. His fight, with the<br />

support of our members, provided numerous conditions above the Award provisions making<br />

Wollondilly Council a more desirable workplace. Greg’s effectiveness as a delegate was achieved<br />

because he had very strong support from Union members, he was a member of almost every<br />

Committee at Council, from the Consultative Committee to Work Health and Safety Committee.<br />

Greg knew the importance of keeping membership strong at Council. He approached every new<br />

employee at Council and encouraged them to join the Union.<br />

Ron Hunt from Parkes Shire Council was also awarded Life Membership - see page 16 for more details<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 25

CONFERENCE <strong>2019</strong>: UNION<br />

Natalie Piggott-Herridge, James Koval, Ross Crawford (Treasurer), David Walsh,<br />

Sharon Sewell (Vice President), Jim O’Malley, Larry Freeman, Graeme Kelly (General<br />

Secretary), Anna Maria Saglimbeni, Jeff Wearing, Thao Tran, Raffaele Catanzariti,<br />

Alby Bordignon, Katie Gillen, Art Jenkins, Glen McAtear (President), Stephen<br />

Mulholland, Bernardo Lynch. Not pictured – Michael Maggioros & Carl Cleaver.<br />

Your USU<br />

Executive -<br />

a strong<br />

future for<br />

USU members<br />

Delegates<br />

come from<br />

across NSW<br />

& the ACT<br />

26 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

Conference<br />

is a great<br />

opportunity for<br />

delegates from<br />

across NSW<br />

& ACT to<br />

catch up.<br />


Sponsors<br />

were on<br />

hand to talk<br />

to delegates<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 27



There is an old nursery rhyme:<br />

“Sticks and stones might break my<br />

bones but words will never hurt me”.<br />

Apparently this children’s rhyme was developed in response<br />

to verbal bullying in school playgrounds.<br />

Does merely clicking the “like” button expose that person<br />

to a risk of having endorsed the defamatory publication? A<br />

Facebook page which is open to have people place comments<br />

on it could put the administrators of the Facebook page at risk<br />

as well as the person who has posted the comment.<br />

Of course, we all know that bullying where it involves words<br />

can be very damaging to the victim, and publications found<br />

to be defamatory equally can be very damaging to the victim.<br />

An essential feature of defamation is the publication, whether<br />

that’s in a newspaper, or a flyer or on television.<br />

Defamation in broad terms is something said or written which<br />

negatively affects the reputation of another person. Issues can<br />

arise as to whether it’s true, whether it’s not true or whether<br />

it is unsubstantiated and there can be issues as to what is a<br />

defence. It is a defence to the defamation if the defendant<br />

proves the negative express or implied assertions (defamatory<br />

imputations) are substantially true.<br />

Defamation in many circumstances is misunderstood. In more<br />

classical terms it is a civil wrong and is the tort of defamation.<br />

There are a wide range of considerations as to whether someone<br />

has been defamed and what might be the appropriate<br />

remedy.<br />

In NSW, except in very limited circumstances, only a natural<br />

person can be defamed and therefore be able to sue for defamation.<br />

By and large, corporate entities whilst a legal entity<br />

cannot bring an action in defamation. The defamation laws are<br />

captured in the common law as developed over many years<br />

and in part within the provisions of the Defamation Act 2005<br />

(NSW) (the Act). The law is complex and court proceedings<br />

involving defamation are potentially very expensive.<br />

It does not always need to be words that give rise to the defamatory<br />

imputation. It could be a combination of words and<br />

drawings and it has been established that a photograph in the<br />

appropriate circumstances can create a defamatory imputation.<br />

There was a famous case involving the photograph of a<br />

footballer which gave rise to adverse imputations and a finding<br />

of defamation.<br />

Closer scrutiny in more recent times has involved the use of<br />

social media. Social media is NOT excluded from the laws of<br />

defamation. Social media can give rise to the interesting issue<br />

as to who is publishing the defamatory matter.<br />

Further issues can arise as to whether someone has endorsed<br />

the publication. This creates potentially a further exposure to<br />

anyone who endorses the publication, including by distributing<br />

it by hyperlink.<br />

Similarly in groups of people on Facebook Messenger or<br />

WhatsApp, there is a publication. Bullying in a group chat<br />

could give rise to a defamation action. Only what if the<br />

wrongdoer is a minor? Are their parents liable? Who is paying<br />

for their internet access? What if the parents have seen<br />

the defamatory material and taken no action? Are damages<br />

the only remedy or should there be an injunction, with the risk<br />

that where there is a breach of the injunction the wrongdoer<br />

could face contempt of court?<br />

There could, for example, be a strata dispute where unit holders<br />

are putting forward their views or their opinions on a variety<br />

of issues including for instance fellow unit holders or the<br />

strata manager and that could give rise to a situation where<br />

online defamatory comments are made.<br />

In the wider community you need to carefully think through:<br />

1. What you are saying;<br />

2. Why you are saying it;<br />

3. What is motivating you? Is malice a motive?<br />

There are proper grounds for thinking twice before you take a<br />

position on social media. It cannot be easily erased. In traditional<br />

terms it was “measure twice and cut once”. We all need<br />

to reflect on what we say and how we say it.<br />

* This article is intended to be hopefully thought provoking<br />

and only touches upon very limited aspects of the laws of<br />

defamation in NSW.<br />

Michael Barnes Partner<br />

Email: mbarnes@codea.com.au<br />

Phone: (02) 8226 7356<br />

Location: Sydney<br />

DO Y<br />


Carroll & O’Dea have a team of expe<br />

When it matters contact Carroll &<br />

We are committed to support USU m<br />

Whether we assist you with a workp<br />

or a compensation claim, we’ll comp<br />

28 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>



Carroll & O’Dea have a team of experts ready to assist with your legal needs.<br />

When it matters contact Carroll & O’Dea Lawyers.<br />

We are committed to support USU members throughout NSW.<br />

Whether we assist you with a workplace dispute, property transaction, commercial advice,<br />

or a compensation claim, we’ll complete your work to the highest standard.<br />

Michael Barnes<br />

Partner<br />

Scott Dougall<br />

Partner<br />

Peter Lleonart<br />

Partner<br />

1800 059 278<br />

When it matters<br />

enquiry@codea.com.au<br />

www.codea.com.au<br />

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation<br />

Level 18, 111 Elizabeth Street, Sydney New South Wales 2000<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 29


Take a break<br />

Being a USU member<br />

means you and your<br />

family can stay at our<br />

beautiful resort at Port<br />

Macquarie for special<br />

rates - all year round.<br />

Do yourself a favour and<br />

book your stay today!<br />

USU Riverside Resort @ Port<br />

USU members can enjoy great holidays at the Union’s own Riverside Resort, located in beautiful Port<br />

Macquarie on the Hastings River. The resort consists of a Motel and a Caravan Park, so no matter what<br />

type of holiday you are after your needs are covered. You can contact the motel or caravan park by calling<br />

Riverside Resort @ Port on 02 6584 9155 or check the website at www.riversideresortatport.com.au. You<br />

can also call the Union’s Head Office on 1300 136 604 for more information.<br />

Or holiday in Jervis Bay!<br />



Save up to $245<br />

per week! Check<br />

out more at www.<br />

riversideresortatport.<br />

com.au.<br />

<strong>United</strong> Services Union members also have the option of heading south to Jervis Bay at the Rail Tram and Bus<br />

Union Holiday Park. USU members can stay at discounted member rates.* Located in the Booderee National<br />

Park, the RTBU Holiday Park at Jervis Bay, is just a 3 hour drive south from Sydney, but a world away ...<br />

Bookings can be made by telephoning the RTBU Office on (02) 9264 2511.<br />

* conditions apply<br />

Check out our new<br />

renovations @ Riverside!<br />

Stay on the river<br />

4 star accommodation<br />

Fantastic facilities<br />

www.riversideresortatport.com.au | (02) 6584 9155 | riversideresort@usu.org.au<br />

30 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


This year Michelle & Grant Seage<br />

took over as new managers at our<br />

Riverside Resort in Port and what<br />

a year it’s been! Michelle and<br />

Grant took some time out to talk<br />

to <strong>United</strong> <strong>magazine</strong> about why<br />

they love their jobs!<br />



A role of this type had been on our<br />

minds for a while, it seemed like the<br />

perfect way to combine our skillsets<br />

in an industry that we both enjoy.<br />

Michelle has worked in different areas<br />

of the industry for 30 years and Grant,<br />

after 20 years in Defence has owned<br />

and operated several Cafes together<br />

with a Maintenance & Renovation business.<br />

On seeing the position advertised<br />

and visiting the property it was the perfect<br />

opportunity given our love of the<br />

Ocean & Coastal Life and Hospitality<br />

experience, whilst working together.<br />







We both enjoy meeting people, getting<br />

to know their favourite Cabins/Rooms<br />

and as they return remembering names<br />

etc. Grant enjoys being active in the<br />

park and ensuring the facilities are well<br />

maintained for our visitors.<br />



Port Macquarie has a great climate all<br />

year round , beautiful beaches, and national<br />

parks in the area together with a<br />

great variety of Shopping & Restaurants<br />

to cater for all needs.<br />



Absolute Waterfront! Arguably there are<br />

not many properties in Port Macquarie<br />

that enable you to throw a line in from<br />

your Verandah as our Cabins do and our<br />

Waterfront Motel rooms are beautifully<br />

appointed. We are small enough that it<br />

is a very personal & peaceful property<br />

even in the busiest times whilst offering<br />

a diverse range of accommodation.<br />

We are minutes from the Town Centre<br />

and beautiful beaches. Within walking<br />

distance are Supermarkets, Cafes and<br />

Restaurants.<br />

The summer break is approaching and<br />

affordable accommodation is impossible<br />

to find!<br />

You may have missed this summer<br />

break but don’t get caught out next<br />

year!<br />

Riverside Resort @ Port is owned by<br />

the USU and to ensure fair access for<br />

our members and their families during<br />

this popular time our Riverside Resort<br />

@ Port holds a ballot each year.<br />



SUMMER 2020/21<br />

at our Riverside Resort in Port Macquarie<br />


Our ballot ensures that <strong>United</strong> Services<br />

Union members are given priority for<br />

accommodation during peak season.<br />

The Ballot for <strong>2019</strong>/20 was held earlier<br />

this year and we have now officially<br />

opened the ballot for <strong>Summer</strong> 2020/21<br />

to make sure our members get a head<br />

start!<br />


SEASON FOR 2020/21?<br />

The Ballot applies for the period<br />

Saturday 12 December 2020 to Saturday<br />

23 January 2021.<br />


FOR 2020/21 CLOSE?<br />

This Ballot will close 31 May 2020 and<br />

the relevant members will be notified by<br />

30 June 2020.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 31




Concessional contribution caps, indirect<br />

cost ratios, aged-based strategies,<br />

auto rebalancing, tax rebates, transition<br />

to retirement, reversionary pensions.<br />

This may as well be a foreign language<br />

for most people.<br />

But taking steps to put your super in order<br />

and get on the right track to make<br />

the most of your retirement savings<br />

doesn’t have to be complicated at all.<br />

All you need are long-term sustainable<br />

investment returns, great service to help<br />

you manage your super, and good financial<br />

advice when you need it.<br />



Super is a long-term investment. If you<br />

want to enjoy the best possible retirement,<br />

you need to earn good sustainable<br />

returns on your super for the next<br />

thirty, forty or even fifty years.<br />

That’s why it’s so important for your<br />

super fund to have a genuine long-term<br />

responsible investment strategy.<br />

Some investments may generate high<br />

returns in the short term but they can<br />

pose significant risks to the community<br />

and the environment. These risks may<br />

seriously erode the value of some investments<br />

over the long term.<br />

At LGS, we carefully assess the environmental,<br />

social and governance risks of<br />

every investment decision we make to<br />

ensure that we earn long-term sustainable<br />

returns for all our members.<br />

In fact, LGS is one of just a few super funds<br />

in Australia to be certified as a response<br />

super fund by the Responsible Investment<br />

Association of Australasia (RIAA).<br />



A high number of Australians still<br />

have up to two or three accounts with<br />

different super funds. While this may<br />

suit some, many people may benefit<br />

from combining their accounts with just<br />

one really good super fund.<br />

It’s now much easier to combine your<br />

super accounts, but one quick call to<br />

LGS and we can guide you through the<br />

process and make sure you’ve got everything<br />

in order.<br />

We can also give you information on<br />

contributions, different investment options,<br />

insurance, and explain how we<br />

invest your money.<br />

You can also use LGS Member Online to<br />

manage your super when it’s convenient<br />

for you or you can download our mobile<br />

app to your device.<br />



While you may not need financial advice<br />

when you first start work, it can be very<br />

valuable when you’re going through major<br />

changes in your life such marriage,<br />

children, a career move or divorce.<br />

And of course, when you start to seriously<br />

plan for your retirement, getting<br />

some expert financial advice can help<br />

you make the right decisions about your<br />

long-term future.<br />

In fact, recent research* shows that<br />

more than 80% of people who received<br />

advice feel prepared for retirement compared<br />

to just over 30% who received no<br />

advice at all.<br />

Good financial advice can help you<br />

work out how much super you’re likely<br />

to need and how long it will last. You’ll<br />

also be able to find out the best ways to<br />

maximise your super so you can enjoy a<br />

well-earned retirement.<br />

At LGS, none of our financial planners<br />

receive any bonuses or commissions, so<br />

their number one priority is you. Their<br />

job is to help you grow your super and<br />

plan for the best possible retirement.<br />


LGS has been helping people make the<br />

most of their super for more than 20<br />

years and you don’t have to work for local<br />

government to be a member of one<br />

of the most responsible and sustainable<br />

super funds in Australia.<br />

And you don’t have to be a member of<br />

LGS to get good financial planning advice<br />

that’s tailored to meet your needs<br />

and also good value for money.<br />

To find out more, call us on 1300<br />

LGSUPER (1300 547 873) between<br />

8.30am and 5.00pm, Monday to Friday,<br />

or visit lgsuper.com.au<br />

* AFA, CoreData 2018<br />

This article has been issued by LGSS Pty Limited (ABN<br />

68 078 003 497) (AFSL 383558), as Trustee for Local<br />

Government Super (ABN 28 901 371 321). This document<br />

contains general information only and does not take into<br />

account your personal objectives, financial situation or<br />

needs. Accordingly, you should consider the information in<br />

the context of your personal circumstances before making<br />

any financial decision.<br />

November <strong>2019</strong><br />

32 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


Front row: USU Northern Organiser Wayne Orton.<br />

To the right: USU Co-Delegate Neil Clark, and<br />

Next right: BCOM Delegate Ian Grimshaw. Picnic<br />

committee member Mark Hartley (kneeling).<br />

Presents for all the kids<br />

Friday the 8th November was Tweed<br />

Shire Council’s Picnic Day held at<br />

Murwillumbah Leagues Club. With<br />

approximately 200 members in<br />

attendance a great day was had by all<br />

with slides and merry go rounds and a<br />

surprise visit from Santa, to hand out<br />

the presents to the children.<br />

There was a petting zoo on site that<br />

proved very successful with the kids<br />

also. Food and drink, chips and lollies<br />

were also a favourite of the day. A BBQ<br />

lunch was on the menu for the members<br />

and an open bar in the afternoon was<br />

particularly appreciated on what was a<br />

very hot day at 39 degrees.<br />

Various competitions were held throughout<br />

the day such as a broom throwing<br />

comp for the ladies with a $50 winner’s<br />

prize and bottles of wine for the runners<br />

up and football passing competition for<br />

everyone to have a go with a $100 prize<br />

attached for the winner.<br />

A surprise visit from Santa<br />


Each year the USU awards two scholarships, the Phil Smyth Scholarship to assist with the costs of higher education and<br />

the John Beacroft Memorial Scholarship/Grant to assist with expenses related to sporting ambition.<br />

The Union has supported members and their families through the Phil Smyth Memorial Scholarship program for a number<br />

of years and from 2017 has assisted USU members (or dependants), who demonstrate outstanding sporting attributes with<br />

ambitions for higher achievements in the sport arena.<br />

Applicants for both scholarships are required to be full-time students, must be a child of a member, with the member having<br />

at least five continuous years of membership.<br />

Phil Smyth Scholarships are awarded in four categories and are open until 28 February 2020:<br />

Category 1. Secondary Education<br />

Category 2. Tertiary Education, Industrial Relations Studies or Local Government Foundation Studies Operation Certificates.<br />

Category 3. University Studies<br />

Category 4. Industry Scholarship Contribution<br />

The John Beacroft Grants will be open from 1st January to 31st October of each year and will be approved at each Executive<br />

Meeting until funds for that year are exhausted.<br />

These scholarships are to assist members on low incomes.<br />

Members are encouraged to apply for the scholarships. Find out more at www.usu.org.au<br />


<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 33


The USU proudly sponsored the<br />

U17s Koori Connections Rugby<br />

League Football Club at the<br />

annual <strong>2019</strong> NSW Aboriginal<br />

rugby league knockout. The team<br />

was formed this year (<strong>2019</strong>) from<br />

the North Coast with players<br />

stretching from Kempsey to<br />

Grafton region.<br />


The carnival is the biggest indigenous<br />

gathering in Australia held annually over<br />

the October long weekend, attracting<br />

over 150 teams including Men, Women<br />

and Youth divisions.<br />

USU official/s Damien Welsh from the<br />

Mid North Coast (home of the Koori<br />

Connections), Luke Hutchinson from<br />

Newcastle Branch and USU Newcastle<br />

Executive member Larry Freeman<br />

(Central Coast Council) were in attendance<br />

at the game on the Central<br />

Coast and for a jersey presentation with<br />

Koori Connections RLFC CEO Martin<br />

Ballangarry, Manager Nat Duroux, coach<br />

Ronnie Gordon and Coffs Harbour City<br />

Council USU member Al Duroux.<br />

The USU was certainly proud to be involved<br />

in such a significant community,<br />

sporting and cultural event.<br />


(left to right) Koori Connections RLFC Coach Ronnie Gordon and<br />

Trainer (Coffs Harbour City Council USU member) Al Duroux,<br />

USU Organiser Luke Hutchinson, USU Port Macquarie Organiser<br />

Damien Welsh, Koori Connections RLFC CEO Martin Ballangarry<br />

Support them at https://www.facebook.com/kooriconnectionsRLFC/<br />

34 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>



USU member Christine Clark was left with uncertainty about her leave entitlements because Council had<br />

applied the Multiple Employment Clause of the Award. Following a dispute lodged by the USU in the NSW<br />

IRC our member came out a winner!<br />

There has been an arbitrated decision<br />

regarding multiple employment before<br />

the New South Wales Industrial<br />

Commission. The Commission held that<br />

our member was not subject to Clause<br />

29 Multiple Employment.<br />

1. Our member commenced employment<br />

with Uralla Shire Council in<br />

2008 as a permanent part time<br />

cleaner.<br />

2. In the ensuing years our member<br />

was successful in upskilling and in<br />

2017 was successful in being appointed<br />

on merit to another permanent<br />

part time position.<br />

3. Upon acceptance of the second position<br />

in 2017 and being successful<br />

in said position our member was requested<br />

to work additional hours.<br />

4. In 2018 our member enquired about<br />

leave entitlements for both positions<br />

and was advised by Council that<br />

she was employed under Clause 29<br />

Multiple Employment of the Local<br />

Government (State) Award 2017<br />

therefore her leave entitlements are<br />

separate and distinct.<br />

Council never clarified that this position<br />

was a multiple employment position until<br />

some 18 months after it was accepted<br />

by our member and it was never confirmed<br />

in writing by council.<br />

Conciliation in this matter was not successful<br />

despite our member being prepared<br />

to make significant concessions in<br />

an effort to resolve the matter.<br />

Even on the morning of the first day of<br />

hearing the parties where directed to<br />

confer to try and resolve the matter.<br />

Once again our member was prepared<br />

to be reasonable in this matter however<br />

Council steadfastly refused to accept<br />

any sensible approach that the Union<br />

put forward on our member’s behalf.<br />


Uralla Council member<br />

Christine Clark and Grant Clark<br />

The decision was quite significant at<br />

point 55:<br />

55. I find that Mrs Clark’s employment<br />

is not subject to Cl 29 of the Award.<br />

The very core of this dispute is that<br />

Council did not have an unfettered right<br />

to retrospectively apply Clause 29 of<br />

the Award.<br />

It was clear throughout the hearing of<br />

evidence that Council had not confirmed<br />

the status of employment, in particular<br />

that the position was that of multiple<br />

employment and that the position<br />

was not offered as such and therefore<br />

Mrs Clark could not make an informed<br />

choice to accept or reject the position.<br />

It is also significant to note that the use<br />

of the word “may” in Clause 29 was a<br />

significant point in the decision.<br />

At point 22 the Commissioner observed<br />

the following:<br />

22. It was common ground that through<br />

the use of the word “may” the clause<br />

confers a discretion as to whether appointment<br />

to a second position would<br />

be regarded as “multiple employment”<br />

It was clear throughout the hearing<br />

of evidence that Council had not<br />

confirmed the status of employment,<br />

in particular that the position was<br />

that of multiple employment and<br />

that the position was not offered<br />

as such and therefore Mrs Clark<br />

could not make an informed choice<br />

to accept or reject the position.<br />

within the meaning of the clause. If that<br />

discretion is exercised, each position<br />

would stand apart for all purposes of<br />

the Award including for the accrual of<br />

leave entitlements.<br />

The evidence adduced from Council’s<br />

witnesses under cross examination was<br />

that Council did not exercise the discretion<br />

that the word “may” confers at the<br />

time of the employment was offered<br />

and there was no offer in writing as to<br />

the position being regarded for all purposes<br />

of the Award and nor was there<br />

any acceptance of the position being<br />

multiple employment.<br />

This should send a strong message to<br />

employers to ensure that if they intend<br />

to rely on certain discretionary clauses<br />

in the Award then they must commit to<br />

them prior to the employment being offered<br />

and commencing and not seek to<br />

rely on them afterwards retrospectively.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 35



Sash presentation for<br />

the winner of MCC USU<br />

Picnic Day Maiden Plate<br />

A great day at Taree racecourse for<br />

everyone, especially Jock Fraser,<br />

awarded Apprentice of the Year.<br />

The Picnic Day started with some members<br />

having early morning BBQ’s, whilst<br />

others travelled from locations with over<br />

1.5 hours travel and distances over 100<br />

km away. Once all arrived at the Taree<br />

racecourse a members’ meeting was<br />

held run by local Official Damien Welsh<br />

prior to the day’s festivities beginning.<br />

This was then followed by a presentation<br />

for the “Apprentice of the Year”<br />

which was awarded to Jock Fraser<br />

from the Parks and Gardens section, a<br />

welcome addition to the day by all who<br />

were in attendance at the time.<br />

Picnic committee members<br />

This was followed by two speeches,<br />

one given by Luke Hutchinson<br />

the Coordinator of the “New Gen”<br />

Committee and as the Official awarding<br />

the Apprentice of the Year, and the second<br />

was by MidCoast Council Mayor<br />

David West, who thanked all for attending<br />

and for all the hard work the members<br />

had put in over the past 12 months,<br />

which had not gone unnoticed by the<br />

Councillors. The Mayor then finished<br />

off by stating the importance of what<br />

Unions do and being in the Union.<br />

After the presentation, the newly appointed<br />

Apprentice of the Year presented<br />

the “winners sash” in the first race<br />

of the “MCC USU Picnic Day Maiden<br />

Plate”.<br />

The day also featured Fashions on the<br />

Field for both male and female members,<br />

nibbles, drinks, lunch and a few<br />

winners for some. The day was, as<br />

always, a huge success and loads of<br />

fun for all that attended, with approximately<br />

250 members turning out for this<br />

increasingly popular day. The Picnic<br />

Day has grown every year since the<br />

amalgamation, and hopefully next year<br />

with the “Water Services” section now<br />

having the same day for Picnic Day,<br />

we will see the day enjoyed by over<br />

350 members alone without partners in<br />

attendance.<br />

Men’s fashion on the field<br />

Women’s fashion on the field<br />

36 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

<strong>2019</strong> NEW GEN AWARD WINNERS!<br />

Photo (left to right):<br />

Mid Coast Council<br />

Mayor David West<br />

USU Port Macquarie<br />

Organiser Damien Welsh<br />

USU New Gen<br />

Coordinator Luke<br />

Hutchinson<br />

MCC USU Delegate<br />

Merv Emerton<br />

<strong>2019</strong> USU Apprentice<br />

of the Year Jock Fraser<br />

accepting his Award.<br />

Jock Fraser, Apprentice Parks<br />

and Gardens member from Mid<br />

Coast Council has been awarded<br />

the <strong>2019</strong> USU New Gen Committee<br />

Apprentice / Trainee of the Year.<br />

Jock has already completed several<br />

modules of Certificate III in Parks and<br />

Gardens and is receiving great results in<br />

these studies. Information gathered by<br />

his nominators truly support Jock being<br />

a worthy recipient with the following<br />

direct quotes from the nomination<br />

“Jock has shown ongoing initiative,<br />

leadership and dedication. He has the<br />

respect of his peers and shows drive<br />

and creativity in all tasks asked of him.”<br />

“Jock is very good at thinking ahead and<br />

predicting what will happen next. This<br />

improves the flow of work and increases<br />

productivity.”<br />

“Jock had a keen interest in horticulture<br />

and a strong willingness to learn all aspects<br />

of the trade.”<br />

On behalf of the New Gen Committee,<br />

“Jock has shown ongoing<br />

initiative, leadership and dedication.<br />

He has the respect of his peers<br />

and shows drive and creativity<br />

in all tasks asked of him.”<br />

the USU certainly congratulates Jock<br />

as a very worthy recipient of this prestigious<br />

Award. The Award was presented<br />

to Jock at the Mid Coast Council Picnic<br />

Day on Friday 18th October <strong>2019</strong> by<br />

USU New Gen Committee Coordinator,<br />

Luke Hutchinson.<br />


<strong>2019</strong> MENTOR OF THE YEAR<br />

We also recognise the positive influences<br />

of genuine mentors in the workplace.<br />

As well as Apprentice of the Year we also<br />

recognise a special mentor. The <strong>2019</strong><br />

USU New Gen Committee Mentor of the<br />

Year was awarded to Robert Humphries,<br />

Treatment Operations Coordinator –<br />

Waste Water, from Dubbo Regional<br />

Council. While undertaking his key<br />

role in Council, Robert has continually<br />



Are you a USU member between the ages of 16 to 35? Interested in connecting with<br />

your New Gen Committee to assist in promoting the collective interests of fellow<br />

younger workers? Why not join Kirsty and others like her?<br />

Contact USU Organiser Luke Hutchinson 0419 761 323 or lhutchinson@usu.org.au<br />

to find out more today.<br />

mentored and developed apprentices<br />

over the years. Information gathered by<br />

his nominators truly support Robert being<br />

a worthy recipient with the following<br />

direct quotes from the nomination:<br />

“He (Rob) had taught me so much in this<br />

job.”<br />

“Rob is a fair honest bloke who shares<br />

information for everyone to grow and<br />

learn who listens to everyone’s ideas.”<br />

“Rob leads by example on tough jobs<br />

by getting in and working side by side<br />

with his employees, especially on jobs<br />

no one wants to do, eg Cleaning out the<br />

inside of Wet Wells.”<br />

On behalf of the New Gen Committee,<br />

the USU certainly congratulates Robert<br />

as a very worthy recipient of this prestigious<br />

Award for <strong>2019</strong>. It is anticipated<br />

the Award will be presented to Robert at<br />

his workplace which is being scheduled<br />

for late November <strong>2019</strong>.<br />

I am part of<br />

the Union<br />

because they<br />

help me feel<br />

secure. If I<br />

am unsure of<br />

my rights I<br />

know who<br />

to ask.<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 37




On behalf of the <strong>United</strong> Services Union, General Secretary Graeme Kelly congratulates<br />

Maxine Dawson from Wollongong City Council, for winning the Union’s<br />

recruitment challenge.<br />

Maxine has been able to recruit 60 members on her own during this 3 month<br />

period. This is a significant achievement and reinforces the fact that member to<br />

member recruitment is the most successful form of gaining new members to the<br />

union. For her achievement Maxine has won a week’s stay in our Port Macquarie<br />

Resort.<br />

Again we congratulate Maxine on her significant achievement.<br />

Members alerted USU officials the morning after<br />

Muswellbrook Shire Council meeting that radio<br />

reports had suggested a trial change in operating<br />

hours had been agreed to by the councillors.<br />

Members were concerned as there had been no consultation<br />

in regards to rosters, start or finish times, weekend hours and<br />

safety concerns at the waste facilities due to staffing levels.<br />

This prompted a quick response from officials and delegates<br />

in starting the grievance process and providing correspondence<br />

with council in regards to members’ rights to consultation<br />

under clause 39 of the NSW State Award 2017 Workplace<br />

Change.<br />

Meetings were arranged between members, delegates and the<br />

General Manager. At this meeting the General Manager stated<br />

that the media release was not an official release from council<br />

and agreed to meet weekly with members at the facility to<br />

discuss any potential changes.<br />


This information was conveyed to members at yard meetings<br />

and prompted members to a “vote of no confidence” in the<br />

sitting mayor. Though there is no evidence suggesting the<br />

Mayor leaked the information to the media this was a final<br />

straw with members.<br />

The meetings with the General Manager began. Council’s plan<br />

for the trial involved reducing staff and hours on weekends,<br />

60 MEMBERS<br />


Graeme congratulates Maxine<br />


fist-rai<br />




not replacing one full-time and a part time position and<br />

changes to rosters which effected staff work life balance.<br />


Meetings were held weekly with council’s proposed draft rosters<br />

rejected and resistance by the members to reduce the<br />

staffing levels at the facility. The General Manager offered to<br />

extend the consultation process by a further two weeks. It<br />

was beginning to be clear that with the right approach members<br />

may have the opportunity to negotiate hours and rosters<br />

more suitable for the membership and could achieve potential<br />

goals that council had wished to achieve. This could have<br />

been achieved from the start of the process had Clause 39<br />

been followed in the first instance.<br />

Members elected for officials to provide correspondence to<br />

council with alternate proposals more suitable to the members<br />

and the operational needs of the waste facilities. Once<br />

again these proposals were on a trial basis.<br />

Council reviewed the members’ proposals and an agreement<br />

was made to trial the members’ preferred hours as well as<br />

rosters that were drafted by the members and to fill the vacant<br />

positions as it became clear these staff were necessary for<br />

safety and fatigue management at the facilities.<br />


The Trial is currently ongoing, but proved that when members<br />

stick together positive outcomes can be achieved.<br />

38 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>


USU members at Lismore City Council/Rous County Council held their<br />

Combined Union Picnic Day 4 October <strong>2019</strong>.<br />

A great day was had by USU members from Lismore City Council combined with<br />

members from Rous County Council, at South Lismore Bowling Club. Over 200<br />

members turned out for the day enjoying a variety of food and drinks for the kids<br />

and adults alike. Rib fillet, bacon, eggs, sausages and a pig and lamb on the spit<br />

were some of the mouthwatering options on offer.<br />

Egg and spoon races for the kids, age races, thong throwing competitions, jumping<br />

castle all day and several games of Bowls were enjoyed by all that attended.<br />

A TOP TEAM:<br />

USU Treasurer/Council Delegate<br />

Ross Crawford (pictured front<br />

left) and USU Northern Organiser<br />

Wayne Orton (pictured front right)<br />

and Northern Branch Committee<br />

of Management Delegate@ Rous<br />

Peter Reade (pictured far right)<br />




When Ballina Shire Council Delegate Art Jenkins counted up the years he was shocked to realise that Ballina Council and the<br />

USU were losing 111 years combined of union loyalty, knowledge, expertise, hard work and dedication following the retirement<br />

of Peter Girvan (39 years), Ray Armstong (38 years) and Tony Pearce (34 years). It was congratulations and best wishes all<br />

around for our great members’ starting out on their next adventure. “It’s been an honour to have you all as part of our Ballina<br />

USU work family,” said Art.<br />

Peter Girvan Ray Armstong Tony Pearce<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 39




2020<br />

The following regional councils have different picnic levies - Ballina Council, Byron Council, Central Coast Council, Coffs<br />

Harbour Council, Mid Coast Council, Narrabri Council, North West Councils, Warren Council, Wollongong City Council.<br />

Please refer to the USU website for further fee information (including varying picnic fee levies).<br />


Direct Debit: Union Contributions are deducted Weekly, Fortnightly, Bi-Fortnightly, Monthly or<br />

Quarterly from the member’s credit card or bank, building society or credit union<br />

account.<br />

Payroll Deduction: Members’ contributions are deducted from their pay and forwarded to Union<br />

office (where the employer provides this facility)<br />

Direct Payment:<br />

Annual Quarter Month Fortnight Week<br />

A Full (earning more than $685.58pw) 579.80 144.95 48.32 22.30 11.15<br />

B 75% Rate (earning $685.58pw or less) 439.40 109.85 36.62 16.90 8.45<br />

C 50% Rate (earning $457.05pw or less) 299.52 74.88 24.96 11.52 5.76<br />

D 25% Rate (earning $228.53pw or less) 159.12 39.78 13.26 6.12 3.06<br />


Annual Quarter Month Fortnight Week<br />

E Full (earning more than $685.58pw) 561.08 140.27 46.76 21.58 10.79<br />

F 75% Rate (earning $685.58pw or less) 420.68 105.17 35.06 16.18 8.09<br />

G 50% Rate (earning $457.05pw or less) 280.80 70.20 23.40 10.80 5.40<br />

H 25% Rate (earning $228.53pw or less) 140.40 35.10 11.70 5.40 2.70<br />

2020 - AIRLINES MEMBERS INC PICNIC TICKET ($8.80pa levy applies)<br />

Annual Quarter Month Fortnight Week<br />

I Full (earning more than $685.58pw) 588.60 147.15 49.05 22.64 11.32<br />

J 75% Rate (earning $685.58pw or less) 448.20 112.05 37.35 17.24 8.62<br />

K 50% Rate (earning 457.05pw or less) 308.32 77.08 25.69 11.86 5.93<br />

L TAB & Agencies - Casuals Per Hour: 0.32<br />

M TAB & Agencies - Junior Casuals Per Hour: 0.21<br />

All rates include GST.<br />

For more information contact<br />

the USU on 1300 136 604.<br />

Members receive an invoice and may pay by mailing a cheque, providing a credit<br />

card number, via Bpay or by cash over the counter.<br />

40 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 41

42 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

GREAT<br />

PRIZES<br />

TO BE<br />

WON!<br />

Two winners will be awarded in the following<br />

categories: Ages 8-12 years and Ages up to 7.<br />

Send your entry to: USU Kids, Level 7, 321 Pitt St,<br />

Sydney for your chance to win some great prizes.<br />

Winners will be published in the next edition of <strong>United</strong>.<br />

Name:____________________________________________<br />

Age: ______________________________________________<br />

Address: _________________________________________<br />

___________________________________________________<br />

Winners from our Winter <strong>2019</strong> Kids Corner: Piper Irwin (6),<br />

Ella Hoson (4), Jack Ellis (10) and Amanda Lambert (8)<br />

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 43

44 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong><br />





<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 45




46 • <strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong>

<strong>United</strong> <strong>Summer</strong> <strong>2019</strong> • 47

Are you<br />

ready to<br />

roar?<br />

we hope<br />

to see<br />

you<br />

there!<br />



JOIN US ON<br />

FRIDAY 13th<br />

March 2020<br />

A fun day out<br />

at Taronga Zoo<br />

for USU metro<br />

members and<br />

their families!<br />

Find out<br />

more:<br />

www.usu.<br />

org.au/<br />

picnic2020<br />



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