Transport strikes win gains on job security

Around 3000 workers at Fedex are planning rolling four hour stoppages nationwide, in response to the company’s refusal to improve job security as part of enterprise bargaining.

It follows a second 24 hour strike at Fedex on 25 October, after the company tore up an in principle agreement.

Workers at Fedex deliver products for massive retail companies including Amazon, Apple and Sony.

During the pandemic the company’s profits have surged on the back of the boom in online shopping and deliveries, seeing its global profit up to US$5 billion. The union agreed to pause bargaining with the company during the pandemic last year. As a result workers have not received a pay rise this year.

“We work hard and we just want what’s owing to us”, Nisa, who has worked for the company for six years, said. “We worked in the pandemic and did everything that we possibly could. I’m sick of the way we’re treated at worked, [with management always] putting pressure on take out more freight. Fedex are making money, just give us what you owe us.”

It is the only major company yet to settle after months of limited industrial action across the sector.

After threatening co-ordinated national strike action across the industry, Transport Workers Union (TWU) members across seven major freight and parcel delivery companies including Toll, Linfox and Global Express have now settled on new agreements with improved job security provisions and pay rises.

The union has been seeking caps on outsourcing of work and requirements to offer any extra work to existing staff before bringing in labour hire workers.

The latest agreement is at StarTrack, where workers will receive 3 per cent annual pay rises and the same pay rate for labour hire workers in an effort to restrict outsourcing.

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