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Union tells Teys to ‘put-up or shut-up’

Beef Central, 11/03/2014

 

The Union representing meatworkers has challenged Teys Australia to ‘put up or shut-up’ in its ongoing dispute with the company over employment conditions at its Beenleigh export abattoir in southern Queensland.

Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union branch secretary Brian Crawford issued a statement yesterday in response to claims by Teys Australia following a successful AMIEU appeal against the recent approval of an Enterprise Bargaining Agreement at the company’s Beenleigh plant.

The AMIEU claimed Teys Australia had an easy way to resolve the dispute over what the AMIEU claimed was a “rigged and manipulated vote.”

“It can put the EBA proposal up again for a vote with a genuine roll of voters that actually will be employed under the agreement,” it said. “It’s what the AMIEU has been asking for since August 2013.”

Mr Crawford predicted that the company would oppose this option, at all costs.

“Despite the corporate propaganda, Teys Australia is aware that after six months of working to the new agreement, workers have had enough of it and won’t vote in favour of it again,” he said.

“It’s why they compiled a dodgy roll of voters to vote on this EBA last year – they knew they were going to need every vote they could stack-in, like trainee supervisors of all things.”

“The AMIEU told them the vote wouldn’t hold up, but they knew better.  So they pressed ahead and rolled out their expensive lawyers.  If there are any complications as a result of this appeal decision, Teys Australia is the sole authors of the situation.” 

No-one should feel sorry for “ballot riggers” when they come unstuck, Mr Crawford said.

“Now it’s time for them to end the rorts and put the EBA up for a vote again with a proper roll.”

“They can put up or shut up.  If they don’t want to take the democratic option, then everyone should recognise their spin for what it is – just froth and bubble.”

According to information published in Brian Todd’s agInfo Carvings drawn from a recent AMIEU member newsletter, there are currently four red meat processor companies with EBAs under negotiation: Bindaree Beef (Inverell); Hunter Valley Meats (Scone); Nippon Meat Packers (Wingham); and Northern Co-operative Meat Co (Booyong pork plant NSW).

So far in 2014 there have been four meat processor agreements registered with the Fair Work Commission, including Killarney Abattoir (Qld), G&K O'Connor Pty Ltd (Victoria, Somerville Retail Services (Coles’ central packer Victoria) and Wodonga Rendering Pty Ltd.

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