TAFE support staff enterprise bargaining bulletin

TAFE support staff enterprise bargaining bulletin June 2015 (PDF version)


Last week TAFE sent an update out to all staff regarding the classification consultation. The PSA (CPSU) needs to let you know that the classification is still under development and is yet to be agreed. The current enterprise agreement provides that the parties will make ‘best endeavours’ to complete ‘consultation’ on the development of a new classification structure.

The formal ‘consultation’ period is now over. However, the final draft classification is yet to be complete. The PSA (CPSU) will develop a scoping document with TAFE to have a third party finalise the details of the proposed classification. This then needs to be checked and measured against the work currently undertaken by PSA (CPSU) members to ensure that PSA (CPSU) members are better off in the coming years.

Any draft classification structure at this stage will be subject to negotiations in enterprise bargaining and subject to PSA (CPSU) members’ endorsement.

Enterprise bargaining

Your bargaining team met with TAFE last week for the first discussions for the next enterprise agreement. TAFE funded their (10) management representatives to all be at the table. However, they have so far refused to fund their staff bargaining representatives.

It is not acceptable to prevent your bargaining representatives attending the meetings in person. Negotiations are significantly more effective when both sides are sitting in the room together. The PSA (CPSU) has insisted that, in accordance with the enterprise agreement, TAFE must fund the bargaining representatives who are negotiating this on your behalf.

What is being offered?

  • TAFE is proposing that negotiations are completed within 70 days, and a balloted, approved & signed agreement is completed within 90 days.
  • TAFE is proposing that this agreement will have the (yet to be completed) classification descriptors.
  • TAFE is proposing that the translation from the current classifications to the new classifications occurs through future restructures and new appointments. The details to be provided.
  • TAFE is threatening to block up to 2.5% pay rise effective from 1 July 2015 if these objectives are not reached on time. This applies even if TAFE is the cause of the delays.
  • TAFE wants to ‘standardise’ working conditions, such as hours of work, span of hours and other conditions.

What is next?

The PSA/CPSU is finalising the Log of Claims for key issues for this round. To ensure that any classification descriptors are equitable and appropriate, the union needs:

  • the final version provided by the external company;
  • time to research and evaluate the potential impact on the full range of PSA/CPSU members;
  • provide comprehensive information to members so everyone understands the proposal and its potential impact; and
  • negotiate a detailed translation process that protects members’ take home pay.

The union is not convinced that all of this can be achieved within the 70-90 day time limit being imposed by TAFE. To ensure that Union members are not disadvantaged, we are seeking a response from TAFE for a 12 month extension of the current agreement, with some minimal changes, and the 2.5% pay rise effective from 1 July 2015.

This would provide all sides with another 12 months to negotiate the next agreement, properly consider and review the (yet to be finalised) classification descriptors; the consolidation of various conditions; and ensure that all TAFE staff are aware and understand the details and potential impact of the proposed changes. This way, when staff vote on any proposed changes it will be a fully informed vote.

In solidarity
Your bargaining representatives

PSA delegates

Leon Parissi
Margaret Bamford
Christopher Hobbins
Glenda Pryor
Gary Hodgkinson
Andrew Ruddell
Brad Cowie
Brook Down

PSA staff

Phoebe Dangerfield
Blake Stephens