Members Meeting at Bayside!


Bayside Council delegates met with their ASU campaign organiser, Hayley, on 7 August, leading into running an all members meeting at Bayside City Council on 24 August. Issues flagged by delegates included some recent industrial issues arising, ideas to improve the union’s presence, importance of having delegate representation from across all areas of Council and increasing the overall number of delegates at Bayside, particularly amongst women.

Meanwhile, over the last 6 months ASU leadership have reviewed the union’s structure and future vision, in order to deliver the best outcomes for ASU members. Bayside was one of the first meetings in a round of statewide member meetings to get members feedback and input into our plans to win.

Why do we need to look at change? CEO and Executive pay rates are at an all-time high – yet pay increases for workers are at an all-time low. Thirty years of experimenting with trickle-down economics has failed to provide secure jobs or fair pay rises. Rate Capping and the ever increasing restrictions on how unions operate are making it harder to bargain for fair pay and conditions – or even retain current conditions.

Members at Bayside discussed some of these issues collectively and provided some great feedback on the union’s vision to deliver better outcomes for members. A few of the topics discussed included challenges of the potential of industry bargaining for a multi employer agreement covering all councils, Aged Care campaign against Federal Government funding changes and shoring up in house services and insecure work. Members felt strongly about increasingly insecure work due to use of agency and fixed contracts at Bayside.

Casual work was originally limited to rare cases where an employer could not cover the workload with permanent workers because of unforeseen shortages. Today things have changed. Employers use casual and other insecure work arrangements to cover entire work functions. Councils are increasingly engaging in agency and labor hire work which not only leads to job insecurity, but according to our members at Bayside it contributes to decreased productivity because the collaboration of project work is often carried out by multiple people coming and going through council. It was great to hear that members would support the ASU’s campaign on this matter across all councils.

The Bayside member meeting kicks off a round of meetings scheduled over August/September. We look forward to hearing more member feedback on what’s important to you. Keep your eye out for when your mass meeting is held, as your input and feedback on these issues is vital!

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