The Bargaining Team has continued to make solid progress at the bargaining table for the new Enterprise Agreement at La Trobe University. At 12:30pm to 1:30pm on Tuesday 26th of September we will have an online members meeting so that we can report on where the campaign is at, provide details about the process and timeline to wrap up bargaining and possible next steps. At the meeting you will learn about what has been in principle agreed and about the democratic process that will govern the rest of the bargaining. We are getting very close! Register to attend our Zoom meeting
Branch Update 28th August
Since the strike on August 17th, the NTEU's bargaining team have been able to make significant progress. We have reached an in principle agreement to multiple clauses including those relating to Field Work, Personal, Carers and Infectious Diseases Leave, Indigenous Australian Employment, Professional Staff Workloads (including the introduction of a Professional Staff Workloads Monitoring Committee) and an allowance for gender affirmation leave (allowance of up to $2000 to compensate for loss of income which is also available to casual staff.
Branch Update 11th August
During last week's Enterprise Bargaining negotiations we won some significant changes on decasualisation. We won 65 full-time-equivalent academic roles, which is a reduction of about 40 percent of this year's casual academic FTE. We also won enforceable rights for existing casuals to those new jobs.This week and next, we're continuing to bargain on academic and professional staff workloads which members last week voted to strike over if significant progress is not met. At this stage, the strike is going ahead from10am to 2pm on Thursday 17 August.
Branch Update 16th June
It is a crucial time in bargaining negotiations, and we must stand up to managements below-inflation wage offer. Our Open Letter to the Vice-Chancellor demands progress on key NTEU claims: professional and academic workloads, pay, secure jobs and a rejection of management’s proposal to expand the working week by 3.6 percent per year. Read the open letter here and click the hyperlink at the bottom to sign. Chat to your colleagues, collect their signatures and/or come along to Branch Committee meetings to tell us what you think
Branch Update 8th June
At the open members meeting last week, there was a strong consensus that the recent pay offer from management is insulting. It is one of the lowest offers received by any tertiary institution in this bargaining round. LTU staff are currently the lowest paid university workers in Victoria on an hour-by-hour calculation. NTEU members have written an open letter to John Dewar in response to the “salary increase” offer. To ensure strength in numbers, it won’t be sent until at least 150 people have signed. You can add your name here. Feel free to share with non-members in your team if you would like.
Branch Update 30th May
The university told us yesterday that over 300 staff have been back paid for underpayment of superannuation where they took recreation leave on double pay. The total underpayments amount to $134,160.70. This win could not have been possible without the members who collectively organised to ensure that their entitlement was met. It underscores the importance of winning strong cluases in the new agreement to improve conditions for all staff.
On June 6 at 12pm, our Bargaining Team will present on where we're close to management and where we're far apart. We'll also discuss management's pay offer. All staff are welcome! Register here to attend
May 3rd: National Day of Action
On May 3, members from La Trobe University, University of Melbourne, Monash, Deakin, Federation, Swinburne, Victoria and RMIT participated in a statewide meeting. In total, around 1,500 people attended the event at the Trades Hall. This action marked the start of our industrial activities during this bargaining round. We used this opportunity to reinforce to La Trobe management that they need to join with other university managements to solve issues plaguing the sector including job redundancies, unfair working hours and blatant bage theft. Around 40 staff from La Trobe University attended!
How does industrial action work?
- For further information on the bargaining process and your rights see our FAQs and Resources
- You do not have to give notice in advance that you will be undertaking industrial action (of course you can if you’d like to and in fact we’d encourage you to let colleagues know that you’re striking and why!)
- Your employer cannot ask you beforehand if you plan to take part in the strike. If they do, you are not obliged to answer.
- If you take part in the strike, you must notify your employer afterwards to adjust your pay and check your payslip to ensure you have not been paid. It isn’t legal to accept pay while on strike.
- Non-members can’t join the strike, or they would be participating in unprotected action. But, as soon as you become a member you are protected for industrial action. So if you have a colleague who is union-curious, ask them to join the Union to join the strike!
Industrial Defense Fund
The branch office has heard the clear directions from members regarding accessing the strike fund (‘industrial defense fund’) for the purposes of income supplementation for casual workers for the strike on May 3rd.
With the cost of living crisis intensifying, even a short stoppage of four hours can mean some members can’t afford rent, fuel, food, etc. for that week. This is a once-in-a-generation crisis—all the more reason why the branch is fighting so resolutely for a real and fair pay rise.
We will continue to pursue support for casual colleagues who could potentially face an entire week’s wages by participating in this action. The main form of support available to members are funds donated to the La Trobe Branch directly. If you'd like to donate, please do. If you'd like to apply for funds, please download, fill, and send this form to the La Trobe Branch inbox. If you'd like more information on the rules governing the Defense Fund, please ask.
Frequently Asked Questions
Some frequently asked questions about the strike are answered below:
Am I protected if I take part in industrial action?
Do I have to tell management?
Will I be paid while taking industrial action?
We are advising people not to leave out of office replies, because that is possibly a form of unprotected industrial action.