Telstra union employees will begin a series of four-hour stoppages in the CBD of every state and territory throughout Australia, starting 8am, Tuesday, December 16.
The Communications, Electrical, Electronic, Energy, Information, Postal, Plumbing and Allied Services Union of Australia (CEPU) initiated an Australian Electoral Commission ballot of more than 5000 Telstra union employees regarding wage agreement disputes with the telco, resulting in the announcement yesterday of over 90 per cent voting for industrial action.
Four-hour stoppages will also occur at Telstra call centres in Bendigo, Victoria, Burwood, NSW, and at the Global Operations Centre (GOC) in Clayton, Victoria. A 48-hour stoppage will also take place at the Clayton GOC from 12.05pm, Tuesday, December 16.
Indefinite stoppages will take place in Melbourne at four Telstra locations: Telstra corporate in Collins st; the Telstra Centre in Exhibition st; Telstra Exchange in Lonsdale St; and at 436 Little Bourke St.
The union has announced that the first round of industrial action will require participating members to refuse to work overtime, recalls and callbacks, from midnight, Friday, December 12, until midnight, Sunday, December 14.
CEPU national president, Ed Husic, said its members wanted a union collective agreement and not a non-union deal.
The unions (CEPU, CPSU and APESMA) claim Telstra is offering wage raises that are below inflation rates, is trying to shift workers coming off AWAs onto lower pay rates than other employees, and has stonewalled repeated attempts at compromise.
Telstra responded with a statement stating that dialogue is open between the parties, and that it is offering “fair and competitive” wage agreements to its workers.
The CEPU said further notice of action in other states will be provided in the near future. It has instructed members to carry out “emergency/life and limb jobs” only.