Beef processor Teys Australia has condemned threatened industrial action at its Beenleigh plant by the Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union, branding it “pointless, potentially illegal and damaging.”
In a statement issued this morning the company says it, and most of its employees, have had enough of the union’s thirst for power and its campaign to sabotage a legitimate vote of its employees which approved a new Enterprise Bargaining Agreement in August 2013.
Teys chief executive Brad Teys said the company believes the latest industrial action proposed by the union is unprotected, because agreement has already been reached.
“This refusal to accept the majority decision and willingness to detrimentally affect our employees and our company removes the last shred of credibility the AMIEU had left, if any,” he said.
“Australians as a whole – including most unions – recognise that industrial relations must change in order to protect local manufacturing and local jobs, but this union is still trying to drag us all back in time with their militant attitude and archaic views.”
The new Teys Beenleigh EBA was recognised by the Fair Work Commission in September 2013 and came into operation on October 4.
Following an appeal by the AMIEU, the full bench of the FWC overturned the original decision based on a technicality, however Mr Teys said there was no suggestion by the full bench that the original approval by Teys Australia employees was not valid.
The matter is listed again for hearing on April 9, the day after the union’s proposed work stoppage at the Beenleigh plant.
Mr Teys said any action was likely to result in significant damage to the company and loss of income to employees including employees who do not participate in the action being stood down, if production cannot be continued on the day.
“This appears to be a strategy of deliberate destruction without serving any useful purpose for the AMIEU's members at Beenleigh,” he said.
Teys Australia said it is likely to pursue legal remedies against the AMIEU over the action.