About 20 SPC Ardmona workers manned a picket line at the gate to the Kyabram factory as part of industrial action.December 19, 2012 4:20am
Australian Manufacturing Workers Union members staged protected industrial action at SPC Ardmona's Kyabram site last Thursday.
Workers at SPC Ardmona’s Kyabram factory held a day of industrial action last Thursday.
Members of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union took protected industrial action in the form of two eight-hour shift stoppages in support of claims being negotiated as part of a new enterprise bargaining agreement.
About 20 workers manned a picket line at the gate to the factory on Thursday morning.
After six months of negotiations they say the company has not yet come up with an acceptable offer.
AMWU state organiser Jason Hefford said members want to negotiate a deal with a reasonable pay rise of about four per cent while maintaining their working conditions.
‘‘The previous agreement expired on June 30, 2012 and the company is offering zero per cent to December 31, then two per cent from January 1, 2013 and two per cent from January 1, 2014,’’ Mr Hefford said.
‘‘They also want to cap redundancy payments for any new staff at 52 weeks, instead of 104 weeks, and take away paid meal breaks which is a condition currently not used at this site anyway.’’
SPC Ardmona managing director Vince Pinneri said in September staff had voted against accepting the company’s initial offer and had also rejected two further offers.
‘‘While we respect our employees rights to take protected industrial action we are naturally disappointed they have escalated negotiations in this way. Actions like this have an impact not only on our business but also the broader Kyabram community,’’ Mr Pinneri said.
‘‘It is particularly disappointing at this time of year and in such a tough business climate.’’
Mr Pinneri said SPC Ardmona is committed to continuing negotiating to establish a new agreement.
Forklift driver Greg Shaw said staff had undertaken additional training and put forward ideas.
‘‘Production has gone up by probably about 30 to 33 per cent in the last two to three years. (Consumer price index) is currently about 2.8 per cent but they are trying to take everything away from us,’’ Mr Shaw said.
Production worker Ken Johnstone, who has worked for the company for 33 years, said it’s the first time staff have walked off the job while he has been working there.
‘‘Everything is going up but our wages aren’t. We just want to catch up.’’
Quality controller Danielle Noble said staff want to see the company move forward but do not want to lose their conditions. Mr Hefford said the union had asked the company about negotiating on Thursday but this request was rejected.
‘‘I expect further negotiations will now take place sometime in the new year,’’ he said.
Greater Shepparton Deputy Mayor Fern Summer quits nursing job to run as an independent at July's Federal Election.
Three Yarrawonga footballers have excelled at interleague level, representing the Ovens and Murray against Hampden in Warrnambool on Saturday.
The Aboriginal and wider community is mourning the death of revered Bangerang Aboriginal elder, Uncle John ‘‘Sandy’’ Atkinson.
ONE in seven people aged 50 and older have some evidence of macular degeneration, according to Echuca optometrist Andrew Knight.
TONY Spizzica doesn’t like to talk about himself.
Kyabram Football Club will host a family day next weekend.
Where there’s a Will, there’s a way
Berrigan Shire councillor Daryll Morris says he has been sickened by some of the vitriol and personal attacks to surface since the council’s proposal to redevelop Finley’s Memorial Hall and School of Arts site was revealed in October last year.
PYALONG Primary School junior students were treated to a special behind-the-scenes look at Seymour Woolworths last week.
Arriving early at school just got a little sweeter for Barooga Public School students, with the recent introduction of a breakfast program.
Plans for the release of a carp herpes virus has captured the attention of international press.
Farmers from northern Victoria will join a protest rally over milk prices in Melbourne tomorrow, Wednesday.
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.