Unions Unite to support Qube dispute at
Port of Fremantle
QUBE Port of Fremantle and Kwinana WA have been unable to provide shipping companies and shipping agents their usual stevedoring service since 30 July, due to a protected bargaining dispute regarding high-risk workers safety and worker fatigue violations with their stevedoring employees.
Contrary to what Qube is telling their clients, employees have not refused to attend work and are not on a two-week stoppage, nor have they notified for one. They are only unavailable for work when Qube fail to allocate their shifts prior to 1400 WST on the day before any scheduled work, despite Linx, Patrick and DP World all meeting this deadline for their employees.
Qube have failed to agree to a single bargaining claim regarding critical safety concerns raised by the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) over the past 15months. These include long standing issues putting workers lives at risk, from dangerous consecutive runs of excessive hours over extended periods resulting in worker fatigue, rostering workers who have hit the maximum run of shifts, untrained workers being coerced to undertake high risk work.
Compliant rosters, allocations, training, and safety are fundamental conditions at any workplace, but not at Qube!
Unions across Australia are united in supporting the MUA and Qube employees fight for their fundamental right for safe working conditions. This dispute is about protecting the health and safety of all workers.
John Setka, Secretary CFMEU Victoria said, ‘safety is paramount in our industry, as it is on ports around Australia. Every employee working in these high-risk environments has the right to go to work and come home safely to their families. We stand with our brothers and sisters at the MUA and join the fight for Qube employees’ rights for fundamental workplace conditions and we won’t stand down until these serious health and safety issues have been resolved.’
Christy Cain (the future CFMMEU National Secretary) said ‘It is great to see our Construction Division fully supporting the MUA in this dispute alongside the ETU, TWU, AWU and other unions. We will continue to support our Maritime Division until this matter is resolved. This is what the super union is all about, we are united across Australia in this struggle’.
Will Tracey WA Branch Secretary MUA said, ‘Strong unions are only stronger together and I want to thank the CFMEU Victoria/Tasmania construction division, AWU, TWU and ETU for their collective voice in supporting the MUA and Qube employees fight.’
The Maritime Union of Australia has a standing invitation to Qube to return to the bargaining table to continue negotiations. To date Qube have refused to negotiate. Therefore, the bargaining dispute will escalate due to Qube failing to address long standing complaints about many serious life-threatening occupational health and safety issues for Qube employees.
The responsibility for the Protected Industrial Action rests primarily with Qube and their management team.
The collective Unions will show their support by joining the MUA WA Branch and Qube employees dispute on the picket line tomorrow morning from 6am at the entrance to Berth 11 & 12 (near the intersection of Pearse St and Tydeman Road, North Fremantle.)