The CFMEU questions the validity of two new company agreements filed with the Fair Work Commission, which involve $1 companies owned by BHP. “BHP first tried to enter into two separate company agreements, with different terms. We believe that this approach was simply intended to undermine the ability of these workers to maintain a level playing field. In addition to paying about $30,000 a year less than BHP`s current bowen Basin coal mining agreements, the agreements allow for the transfer of workers to one of the company`s coal or metal mining plants throughout Australia anywhere and at any time. They do not offer accident benefits and leave workers worse off when it comes to leave and dismissal rights. New labour agreements developed on the sly by the huge BHP coal multo will drive down wages in Queensland`s coal industry, cfmeu said today. Another negotiation meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, January 23, 2018 at 10 a.m. in Moranbah. “BHP attempted to remove or reduce many of the terms of the 2012 agreement by addressing workplace representation, the ability to pursue litigation, accommodation costs, bonuses, wages and job security.
Progress on a replacement company agreement covering all BMA mines in Queensland was postponed until 2018, after BMA rejected a request from the CFMEU to allow more time for a counter-proposal. BMA then told the CFMEU that it would only be able to hold negotiations in January 2018. M. Smyth said: “BMA has responded to the CFMEU by antics of its intention to reconsider its negotiating position before attempting to resume negotiations in January 2018. BMA`s position at this stage is unclear. We hope, however, that BMA will not act in bad faith by withdrawing from the progress made so far in the negotiations. Registered agreements are valid until terminated or issued. If a job has a registered agreement, the bonus does not apply. However, the company first attempted to completely denucleate the terms set out in the 2012 agreement and enter into a separate agreement for Blackwater mine employees under much worse conditions.
Over time, BHP plans to move from its coal-central staff in Queensland from existing, union-negotiated location agreements to corporate services agreements that pay about $30,000 less per year, said Stephen Smyth, chairman of CFMEU Mining and Energy Queensland. The agreements were adopted in 2018 by a small number of workers in Western Australia and now apply to coal mines in Queensland and NSW. The Fair Work Commission can also help employers and workers negotiate with their New Approaches programme. Read more about The New Approaches on the Fair Work Commission website. “This is a good result for our members and we are delighted that the replacement agreement involves an improvement in job security while maintaining the terms of the previous agreement. The union reached an agreement with BHP that effectively provided for a transfer of the 2012 agreement with improvements in job security and dismissal processes. . . .