Bulletin No: 007 Volume: 21 Friday 9 January 2015
To ALL UFU MFB MEMBERS
IMPLICATIONS OF THE
FEDERAL COURT APPEAL DECISION
AGAINST THE CFA
Yesterday’s unanimous decision of the Full Bench of the Federal Court is a landmark decision that will benefit many state sector employees striving to achieve safe staffing levels.
It changes the landscape of federal industrial relations law and constitutional law and is already being touted by legal commentators as one of the most significant decisions of this era.
This will be a long-lasting and important legacy not just for fire service employees but for state sector employees who come within the federal industrial relations system.
The UFU office has been contacted by a number of MFB members congratulating the Branch Committee of Management and Union Office on the success in defending the CFA UFU Operational Staff Agreement 2010.
MFB Members have also inquired as to the effect of this decision on MFB members bargaining.
As such we provide the following information:
Consistently the MFB’s bargaining team, lead by Deputy Chief Officer Stachhino and Director Employee Relations Sean Hogan, Acting ACFO Juggum, and Acting ACFO Dalrymple, had continually put the MFB position that minimum staffing, consultation, dispute resolution, allowances clauses and other matters were not permittable because they purportedly offended the Re AEU principles.
The effect of the CFA’s decision is that the MFB can no longer put forward the above position as the Federal Court Full Bench has found that it is wrong and as such has vindicated the UFU’s position. In short, the MFB can no longer rely on their misguided belief that staffing and other clauses are unenforceable.
Other areas affected by the decision
The UFU is a respondent to 12 certified agreements and the decision will also apply in other areas and classifications.
Flow-on effect in the wider trade union movement
The effect of the UFU’s case is that nurse-patient ratios, teacher classroom sizes and other public sector unions will be able to rely upon the Appeal Decision to achieve their objectives.
The significance of this Decision cannot be overstated as it now provides certainty and security of agreements reached on staffing levels, protections of classifications and related matters.
Strength in Unity
READ OUT AT MUSTER AND PIN ON NOTICE BOARD
Authorised by Peter Marshall, Branch Secretary