Newcastle port workers downing tools today

PORT Waratah Coal Services’ industrial feud will deepen today, with workers at the Newcastle terminal starting a 24-hour protected work stoppage from noon.
Newcastle port workers downing tools today Newcastle port workers downing tools today Newcastle port workers downing tools today Newcastle port workers downing tools today Newcastle port workers downing tools today

Courtesy PWCS.

Lou Caruana

Negotiations between the unions and company continue, but with no agreement reached, the stoppage will go ahead, says a unified bargaining unit made up of the Maritime Union of Australia, Transport Workers Union, Electrical Trade Union and the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union.

Members decided to extend the stoppage to a full day on May 29 because of their perceived unwillingness of PWCS to reach agreement on the major outstanding enterprise agreement issues.

Talks between PWCS and the unionists have laboured on for more than eight months.

Maritime Union Australia national secretary Ian Bray said: “Unfortunately, despite our continued commitment to reach an agreement, we don’t think the company is getting the message.

“So we are stepping up our campaign of legally protected action whilst continuing every effort to reach a deal.”

MUA Newcastle branch secretary Glen Williams said the full-day stoppage underscored the solidarity expressed by rank-and-file members.

“The decision to escalate the protected action is not taken lightly but these negotiations have been going for a long time and our members want a resolution that protects their rights at work,” he said.

A spokesman for PWCS said the company was negotiating in good faith with the unions.

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