The CPSU NSW has recently started negotiating with TAFE in relation to the TAFE Commission of NSW Administrative, Support and Related Employees Enterprise Agreement 2022.
The CPSU NSW tabled a log of claims in our first bargaining meeting, which included a five per cent per annum increase over the life of the Enterprise Agreement (EA), a no-forced-redundancies clause, a sunset clause, and an entire overhaul of the defective flex time system.
In the first meeting TAFE advised the union it was bound by the NSW Public Sector Wages Policy, which states it is not able to offer more than 2.53 per cent per annum plus superannuation. TAFE also advised it prefers a shorter 12-month EA, as there is a possibility the NSW Public Sector Wages Policy may be overturned after next year’s election.
The CPSU NSW understands the sense in not locking into a long-term EA (for example, 3+ years) in the event that the Wages Policy is overturned, and the public sector is no longer bound by the wage cap. However, the CPSU NSW advised TAFE that we were not willing to accept a flat rollover of the EA, and that the flex agreement must a) be fixed first, and b) that it must be inserted into the EA.
The CPSU NSW is going to continue negotiations with TAFE this Friday as a part of the interest-based bargaining process and will continue to push for beneficial changes to the flex agreement. This includes things such as being able to accumulate flex in the first place, being able to take it, and clarity around the ability of TAFE to put flex workers on rigid rosters (such as those members in the SSB phone teams and the IT Service Desk). If TAFE comes to the table and fixes the major issues with the flex agreement, then it will be up to members to decide whether they are happy to accept a 12-month EA in order to recommence bargaining in less than a years’ time when the NSW Public Sector Wages Policy may no longer dictate wage outcomes for public sector workers. In the meantime, the union will continue to push for provisions relating to no forced redundancies and a sunset clause.
Do you have any questions or feedback about the above? If so, please get in touch with the union by calling us on 1300 772 679.