The ASU has had a win in the Fair Work Commission that will set a benchmark for how employers should consult with local government workers when proposing significant change.
Boroondara City Council has proposed ending its decades-long involvement as an in-home aged care provider but has not adequately consulted with affected workers or the ASU.
Boroondara has been told it cannot hide behind a cloak of confidentiality to avoid its consultation obligations to employees.
The Fair Work decision makes it clear workers must be given the opportunity to influence the final decision and, where councillors are the decision-maker, they must be apprised of the response of employees about the proposed change.
Genuine consultation means being provided with information about proposed major change, and the right to influence decision-makers.
Dedicated in-home aged care workers at Boroondara will now get the genuine consultation they were always entitled to because the Australian Services Union is by their side.
While consultation clauses in local government enterprise agreements vary, the decision sets a standard for the way councils should approach consultation with workers and the ASU when proposing major change.