Airservices Australia staff to strike as negotiations remain grounded

CPSU members working at Airservices Australia will launch a full-day strike on Wednesday, in their continuing fight for fair pay and working conditions.

The strike by CPSU members who work in critical support and administration roles at Airservices will commence at 10pm tonight and continue throughout Wednesday, with air traffic controller trainers who are members of Civil Air also launching a 24-hour stoppage on Wednesday.

This week’s strike is an escalation on more limited industrial action taken by CPSU members over the past month. Professionals Australia and Electrical Trade Union members working at Airservices will also be taking industrial action this week.

CPSU Deputy National President Lisa Newman said: “Airservices Australia management are pursuing an aggressive and completely unacceptable attack on the rights and conditions of critical support staff, leaving our members with no choice but to launch this strike. We expect this action to cause considerable disruption for management, though we have offered safety exemptions around critical system failures.”

“The blame for any public disruption caused by this strike lies squarely with Airservices management. We have been offering right up until the end of last week to suspend this strike if Airservices negotiators would improve their position, but they’ve flatly refused.”

“Our members want to be treated fairly but instead are being treated like second-class citizens when compared to what Airservices is offering air traffic controllers and firefighters, and this double-standard approach has to stop. Support staff deserve the same job security and other rights, and to get the same pay rises at the same time as other Airservices workers.”

“Airservices workers haven’t had a pay rise in more than a year, yet they are being expected to agree to a low pay offer in exchange for unreasonable cuts. Airservices management needs to show its workers that they are respected by negotiating an outcome that reflects the value of their hard work. If we cannot settle on a fair agreement we will have no choice but to take further industrial action, which would be regrettable.”

“The Abbott/Turnbull/Morrison Government’s harsh and unreasonable public sector bargaining policy continues to be a roadblock when it comes to fair outcomes and much needed wages growth in Airservices and other Commonwealth agencies. It’s time for the Government to abandon its ideologically motivated attack on workers and instead fairly reward and recognise the work of our members in this critically important agency.”