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Qantas terminates long haul cabin crew agreement, demands more flexibility

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Qantas terminates long haul cabin crew agreement, demands more flexibility

Old 5th Feb 2022, 06:33
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Thing is, the passenger experience as a saleable commodity is a global product. The cost cost of delivering a quality product is dependant on many things, salaries being one of them.
As result, Ts&Cs can only go on a downward trajectory as QF seeks to compete on costs and uses the Asian airlines as the benchmark.
The premium Asian and Middle East airlines certainly deliver an equal or even superior cabin services product than their western counterparts and they can do this with a far lesser cost base.

The future is not rosy. One of the unfortunate outcomes of globalism.
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Old 5th Feb 2022, 09:56
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The BIG problem for an airline whoís major selling point is safety but who is hell bent on chasing the dollar and who is brutally driving down pay and conditions is that the end result of that cost reduction is usually an accident. Coffin corner is a good analogy for such a business model and when your only selling point is safety you have nowhere to go but down.

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Old 5th Feb 2022, 11:16
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The 18 hour maximum duty limit for international operations in the Minimum Cabin crew award will be interesting in the unlikely event Fair Work terminates their current agreement.
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Old 5th Feb 2022, 13:51
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Originally Posted by FightDeck View Post
The 18 hour maximum duty limit for international operations in the Minimum Cabin crew award will be interesting in the unlikely event Fair Work terminates their current agreement.
Do you think termination is unlikely because the cabin crew have a weak bargaining position and will agree to what Qantas wants during mediation, or do you think Qantas does not have a strong case for termination? If the EA is terminated, what do you think the interesting outcome will be? An application for Fair Work to make a determination to vary the Award, use of foreign based crew, or a change to schedules to accomodate any limiting crew duty limits?
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 01:13
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Originally Posted by theheadmaster View Post
Do you think termination is unlikely because the cabin crew have a weak bargaining position and will agree to what Qantas wants during mediation, or do you think Qantas does not have a strong case for termination? If the EA is terminated, what do you think the interesting outcome will be? An application for Fair Work to make a determination to vary the Award, use of foreign based crew, or a change to schedules to accomodate any limiting crew duty limits?
What risks do Qantas face? Who says Qantas will be successful in termination of the agreement? What ramifications does any decision Fair work make have for multitudes of other employee groups across multiple industries, if Qantas can just show up to negotiate with a bunch of demands, and not compromise with the sole aim of termination being the desired end result? What risk does a decision have on clogging the courts with every other employer trying the same thing should the Qantas tactic prove to be successful?
Who says that Fair Work accepts Qantas position as the only correct and just one? What happens if Qantas are unsuccessful in terminating the cabin crew agreement? Who is to say that this is not just a last ditch negotiation strategy by Qantas?

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Old 6th Feb 2022, 02:29
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Originally Posted by knobbycobby View Post
What risks do Qantas face? Who says Qantas will be successful in termination of the agreement? What ramifications does any decision Fair work make have for multitudes of other employee groups across multiple industries, if Qantas can just show up to negotiate with a bunch of demands, and not compromise with the sole aim of termination being the desired end result? What risk does a decision have on clogging the courts with every other employer trying the same thing should the Qantas tactic prove to be successful?
Who says that Fair Work accepts Qantas position as the only correct and just one? What happens if Qantas are unsuccessful in terminating the cabin crew agreement? Who is to say that this is not just a last ditch negotiation strategy by Qantas?
What risk does Qantas face? Given that the terms of an EA remain in place until replaced or terminated, I would say that the risk for Qantas is little to none either way. Who says Qantas will be successful? There is no guarantee they will be successful, but if you look to the situation the Virgin cabin crew found themselves in early last year, this is what the Commissioner's Recommendation stated:

In my view, if this vote is unsuccessful, realistically, limited options will remain. It should be understood, that against the Commission’s tests, if the Company is faced with a second failed vote was then to make an application to terminate the Agreement and return to the Award; the circumstances would then meet the Commission’s tests for termination of the Agreement. Importantly, the majority of terms in this, in principle Agreement, are significantly more favourable to employees, than many provisions in the Award.

Not sure if this link will work, but you can search Fair Work Commission Virgin Australia Airlines Pty Ltd T/A Virgin Australia (B2021/72) Commissioner Spencer https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&r...YnBEYipn9c_dG-

It is worth noting that the Fair Work Act states that an Agreement MUST be terminated on application if it meets the test mentioned by the Commissioner.

In response, this is what the TWU recommended: https://www.twu.com.au/companies/vir...increwyesvote/

What are the ramifications of termination? My view is it is a reminder of what is at risk. When negotiating you need to understand what the costs and risks are for both parties. If you try to press for outcome that is more cost and/or risk than the other party's alternatives, you have pretty much forced them to take the alternate course of action.

I think your other questions are variations of the same theme.

Don't think I like any of this. This is where we are with the current industrial relations laws and decisions made by the current Commissioners. I just want pilots to be fully aware of what is actually happening so that when it comes time to assessing the risks involved with EA negotiations they are dealing with facts versus being in an echo chamber only hearing what we want to hear.

Last edited by theheadmaster; 6th Feb 2022 at 02:54.
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 08:53
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Originally Posted by theheadmaster View Post
What risk does Qantas face? Given that the terms of an EA remain in place until replaced or terminated, I would say that the risk for Qantas is little to none either way. Who says Qantas will be successful? There is no guarantee they will be successful, but if you look to the situation the Virgin cabin crew found themselves in early last year, this is what the Commissioner's Recommendation stated:

In my view, if this vote is unsuccessful, realistically, limited options will remain. It should be understood, that against the Commissionís tests, if the Company is faced with a second failed vote was then to make an application to terminate the Agreement and return to the Award; the circumstances would then meet the Commissionís tests for termination of the Agreement. Importantly, the majority of terms in this, in principle Agreement, are significantly more favourable to employees, than many provisions in the Award.

Not sure if this link will work, but you can search Fair Work Commission Virgin Australia Airlines Pty Ltd T/A Virgin Australia (B2021/72) Commissioner Spencer https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&r...YnBEYipn9c_dG-

It is worth noting that the Fair Work Act states that an Agreement MUST be terminated on application if it meets the test mentioned by the Commissioner.

In response, this is what the TWU recommended: https://www.twu.com.au/companies/vir...increwyesvote/

What are the ramifications of termination? My view is it is a reminder of what is at risk. When negotiating you need to understand what the costs and risks are for both parties. If you try to press for outcome that is more cost and/or risk than the other party's alternatives, you have pretty much forced them to take the alternate course of action.

I think your other questions are variations of the same theme.

Don't think I like any of this. This is where we are with the current industrial relations laws and decisions made by the current Commissioners. I just want pilots to be fully aware of what is actually happening so that when it comes time to assessing the risks involved with EA negotiations they are dealing with facts versus being in an echo chamber only hearing what we want to hear.
.Would it be a good idea for the union/employees to just continue to "bargain in good faith" during meditation until the FWC makes it decision in April or whenever it is?

Then regardless of the outcome, be it EA termination and reversion to Award or no EA termination, then just continue to "bargain in good faith" just like Qantas always "bargains in good faith" until the outcome of the federal election is known in mid May?

Then maybe further decisions about what might be achievable can be made depending on whether it is Scotty or Albo in charge?

I wonder if much will change in the FWC if Albo wins...
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 09:25
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Let’s hope Albo doesn’t win!
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 09:40
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Originally Posted by SHVC View Post
Letís hope Albo doesnít win!

Just remember that it was Laborís Bob Hawke and Bill Keltyís ACTU that took the flamethrower to the AFAP in 1989.
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 09:45
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Originally Posted by SHVC View Post
Letís hope Albo doesnít win!
Or let's hope he does win!
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 11:07
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Supporting Qantas Flight Attendants

Hi all,

I noticed the thread on this subject but wished to post a link to a petition everyone in aviation should be signing.

https://www.megaphone.org.au/petitio...5A3Q_7dIdSe8wY

Qantas FAs are under fire from the Qantas legal juggernaut. This not a case of 'lucky it is not me'. Engineers and Pilots should be standing by them primarliy because they are our workmates. If that is not enough, the consequences will touch all of us. Qantas are trying to cancel their agreement because they do not like the rostering clauses. If they can do it to them, they can do it to us too. It does not matter what company you work for.

The consequences are dire. If your EA is cancelled, you go back to Award wages. For many FAs, this means about half of their already ordinary wages. I don't even want to look at what a LAME on Award wages would earn. Pilot Award wages would also be a pittance. Awards are not updated and wage rates are often those of 20 years ago.

Hoping as many as possible can support this cause.
cheers
Steve Purvinas - ALAEA Federal Secretary
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 12:17
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What I discovered last year was that the award does not include the award work rules. Not sure if it applies in this case however we were staring down award wages with negotiated work rules, not the weekends off, 8 hour work day of the award. I still do not fully understand how you can apply one and not the other however we were given advice from the union thatís how it worked.
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 13:23
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Cancelling EBAís isnít a new idea, itís always been a part of the EBA process. A simple search of EBAís will show the options each party has when presented with certain circumstances. PIA is one of them.

When an EBA is under negotiation it can, and always could, be cancelled. Mostly this would not happen as it would have dire consequences for the companies work force. Ie, the theory is that the company would loose many employees.

Iím not at all a fan of what Qantas is doing but it is their right under the legislation. All we can do as employees is react. What will be interesting to see is whether peeps will do the maths and realise they can do way better elsewhere in the workforce! Plenty of people I know have flourished during covid starting up their own businesses when presented with stand downs ect. Itís honestly amazed me, I feel like when the airlines start asking stood down people to come back they may be surprised!

But of course I hope a more mutually beneficial solution can be found.
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 20:03
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This should be posted on one of those QF work sites.
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Old 6th Feb 2022, 20:25
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Originally Posted by kimbobimbo View Post
Cancelling EBAís isnít a new idea, itís always been a part of the EBA process. A simple search of EBAís will show the options each party has when presented with certain circumstances. PIA is one of them.

When an EBA is under negotiation it can, and always could, be cancelled. Mostly this would not happen as it would have dire consequences for the companies work force. Ie, the theory is that the company would loose many employees.

Iím not at all a fan of what Qantas is doing but it is their right under the legislation. All we can do as employees is react. What will be interesting to see is whether peeps will do the maths and realise they can do way better elsewhere in the workforce! Plenty of people I know have flourished during covid starting up their own businesses when presented with stand downs ect. Itís honestly amazed me, I feel like when the airlines start asking stood down people to come back they may be surprised!

But of course I hope a more mutually beneficial solution can be found.
I have a relative who is 1 of those flight attendants who have found other employment whilst being stood down. She has told me that she will not be going back to her flying job under the conditions that are being proposed & the same is being said by those she still has contact with in the industry.
As you say,the answer the airlines will get may surprise them.
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Old 7th Feb 2022, 00:52
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Originally Posted by blubak View Post
I have a relative who is 1 of those flight attendants who have found other employment whilst being stood down. She has told me that she will not be going back to her flying job under the conditions that are being proposed & the same is being said by those she still has contact with in the industry.
As you say,the answer the airlines will get may surprise them.
The way I see it, this is the answer Qantas wants.

This is the "legacy" agreement, with lots of clauses the company doesn't like. Pay, Fleet, etc. So if they can get 2500 FA's to choose a different path, then that has saved them a bunch of money. Sure, they may be a little under crewed for a while and lose "a lot of experienced crew", but they don't care, the remaining FA's are all on less money and "more flexible" agreements.

It also has fair reaching repercussions for ALL workers on EA's across Australia, not just Aviation. There are plenty of links below to the various "Awards", but just imagine if every worker in the country took a 15% paycut due to being forced back onto their relevant Award. The knock on affect on the housing market, retail spending, the car market, Hospitality etc. would be devastating to an already struggling post Covid economy. Add rising interest rates as flagged last week by the Reserve Bank. Inflation has already risen to above 3% and QF is only offering 2%.

So things are going to get more expensive and we all will be earning less.

P.S. I was speaking to a guy the other day (upper manager in IT), he said "I didn't know we could do this, what a great way to save a bunch on wages"
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Old 7th Feb 2022, 03:43
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She has told me that she will not be going back to her flying job under the conditions that are being proposed & the same is being said by those she still has contact with in the industry.
As you say, the answer the airlines will get may surprise them.
I'd be guessing that this is exactly what qantas wants.
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Old 7th Feb 2022, 06:08
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Two year wage freeze seems fair.


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Old 7th Feb 2022, 06:26
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Imagine paying 28.9% more for fuel in 2022 on 2017 wages that were already below others, with no new EA in sight. Good luck to the FA I say. QF do not care if they all resign in mass in fact now is the perfect opportunity with international flying so low.
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Old 7th Feb 2022, 21:09
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Originally Posted by SHVC View Post
Imagine paying 28.9% more for fuel in 2022 on 2017 wages that were already below others, with no new EA in sight. Good luck to the FA I say. QF do not care if they all resign in mass in fact now is the perfect opportunity with international flying so low.
Their outlook on the international travel front may have just changed after today's announcement,maybe some back tracking or 'hoping to negotiate in good faith' announcement on the horizon??
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