On 4 April 2017, ABC 7:30 ran a story purporting Enterprise Bargaining was at risk. The story continued a manufactured narrative SDA has been pressing since mid 2016 when its practice of negotiating enterprise agreements which undercut the Award minimum with some of Australia’s largest retailers and fast food employers was exposed. ABC 7:30 relied on input from SDA and the Business Council of Australia. Many of the employers with whom SDA has negotiated enterprise agreements which undercut the Award minimum are the largest members of the BCA. Continue reading
On 31 January 2017, the Retail and Fast Food Workers Union applied on behalf of its members to the Fair Work Commission to terminate an expired Bakers Delight Agreement underpaying hundreds of staff. The Bakers Delight (Victoria) Enterprise Agreement 2011 covers approximately 400 staff across 15 or more stores in Victoria. Analysis by the Retail and Fast Food Workers Union shows more than 80% of retail staff are losing on average almost $1 000 per annum – with some being paid more than $2000 less each year than the minimum wages in the General Retail Industry Award 2010. All but one of the sales assistants are below 21 and more than half are under 18 years of age. Continue reading
700 Hungry Jacks staff in Tasmania. $665 000 back paid - almost $1000 per worker. That's how much the Federal Magistrates Court determined an outrageous SDA deal had cost fast food workers in 2011. This secretive deal was never ratified so it didn't overwrite the Minimum Rates Award in place in Tasmania. That mistake by SDA meant the workers had a legal right to the minimum Award rather than the sell out deal which had stripped their workplace rights. In his judgement, Federal Magistrate Lucev said: Continue reading
Josh Cullinan, secretary of the newly formed Retail and Fast Food Workers Union, said Bakers Delight's outdated Victorian agreement was yet another "shocking" example of large-scale deals that have left hundreds of thousands of workers underpaid, saving big businesses millions every year. Three of Australia's biggest employers – McDonald's, Coles and Woolworths – pay significant numbers of workers less than the award, mostly through reduced or absent weekend penalty rates, it has been revealed. "Bakers Delight's Victorian agreement is simple wage theft, it's abominable, and this is from a company that almost exclusively uses young women from 14 to 18 years of age," Mr Cullinan said. "We are looking at starting to organise these young women, and we are hopeful of launching a campaign in the next few months." http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/bakers-delight-faces-legal-challenge-over-wages-20161230-gtjv3z.html
http://www.theage.com.au/business/workplace-relations/greens-push-to-plug-huge-wages-underpayment-loophole-20161125-gsxtvc.html Josh Cullinan, from the new Retail and Fast Food Workers Union, and who helped expose the wages scandal, said the proposed bill was a "watershed" and it was now up to politicians to decide where they stood. "Every day that politicians equivocate on this important legislation our members are losing $1 million a day," he said. "It's gotta stop." Major employers including McDonald's, Coles and Woolworths all pay significant numbers of workers less than the award through reduced, or in the case of McDonald's no, weekend penalties.
The Retail and Fast Food Workers Union welcomes news that the Greens will move an amendment to the Fair Work Act on Monday 28 November 2016. That amendment will have the effect of returning over $300 Million in weekend, weeknight, overtime, shift, casual and other loadings to retail and fast food workers throughout Australia. The Union has been running a campaign to fix the pay loophole in s. 206. Continue reading
Audacious challenge from a new retail union committed to boosting penalty rates for hundreds of thousands of workers
http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/new-union-to-challenge-shoppies-after-massive-wages-scandal-20161119-gsszlr.html "There's hundreds of millions of dollars being fleeced from these workers and we are sick of it," Mr Cullinan said. "The plan is for us to launch a strong successful union led by retail and fast food workers; they haven't had that for decades."
Today marks the launch of the Retail and Fast Food Workers Union. “We are proud to announce the establishment of a dynamic new national union to represent the interests of retail and fast food workers in Australia.” Said Josh Cullinan, Secretary of the Retail and Fast Food Workers Union. Over the past eighteen months the shocking workplace deals of Coles and McDonalds have been exposed as ripping off low paid workers. Almost every major retailer and fast food company in Australia have enterprise agreements struck with the SDAEA that collectively strip 500 000 workers of over $300 Million each year. Continue reading
https://newmatilda.com/2016/09/19/the-system-has-failed-retail-and-fast-food-workers-says-coles-fair-work-winner/ The unprecedented wage theft at Australia’s largest employers, including Coles, Woolworths, Hungry Jack’s, KFC and McDonalds, and the “trade union” which helped to facilitate them, should be nothing less than a national scandal.
http://www.smh.com.au/interactive/2016/shopped-out/ In truth, Clohesy was paid less than the legal award rate. She got no penalties, and took home just $147 for an 18-hour week. These wages were the result of a workplace deal McDonald’s struck with blokes she’d never heard of: officials of the Shop, Distributive & Allied Employees Association (SDA), the union that was supposed to fight for workers like her – the “Shoppies”.
http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/coles-knew-more-than-half-its-workers-were-underpaid-20160819-gqwk54.html Supermarket giant Coles knew that more than half its workers were underpaid as part of a controversial workplace deal - saving it an estimated $70 million a year. A report commissioned for Coles shows the company was aware of the extent of the underpayment as it was fighting a major case in the Fair Work Commission in which it was accused of short-changing workers.
http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/first-big-pay-boost-for-underpaid-coles-workers-20160813-gqrpbr.html Supermarket giant Coles has been forced to dramatically lift the wages of its online home-delivery drivers – in some cases by hundreds of dollars a week – in response to a landmark decision by the workplace tribunal.
http://www.theage.com.au/business/workplace-relations/dominos-pizza-workers-losing-millions-in-union-deal-without-penalty-rates-20160705-gpyzpf.html Domino's Pizza workers are missing out on penalty rates worth at least $32 million a year due to an old deal struck between the company and the shop assistants' union. Domino's is the latest large Australian company to come under scrutiny for controversial deals struck with the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA).
http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/the-man-who-exposed-the-coles-wages-scandal-in-his-spare-time-20160602-gp9zb7.html He is the suburban dad of three who this week helped bring one of Australia's largest and most politically influential unions to its knees. Josh Cullinan, a former cleaner, exposed the scandalous wage deal the "shoppies" union did with the Coles supermarket chain, which ripped off tens of thousands of workers. And he did it in his spare time.
http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2016/s4473386.htm Obviously the agreement with Woolworths is very similar to the one with Coles, and a lot of workers I've calculated for my own self, for example, are worse off on the EBA that we have compared to the award.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-06-01/woolworths-pay-negotiations-in-spotlight-following-coles-deal/7466768 A part-time Woolworths employee and union delegate has slammed the powerful shop workers' union for the deals it does with big business, as the fallout from yesterday's Fair Work decision against Coles widens.
The Project talks to Duncan Hart following the successful fight to stop Coles stripping penalty rates.
http://www.9news.com.au/national/2016/05/31/17/41/coles-worker-wins-penalty-rates-fight 9 News video and article following the Coles win in the Fair Work Commission
http://www.smh.com.au/business/workplace-relations/coles-underpaid-workers-cut-penalty-rates-tribunal-finds-20160531-gp7vxm.html Supermarket giant Coles underpaid its employees and cut penalty rates in a cosy deal with the shop assistants' union that has cost low paid workers perhaps $70 million a year.