ALLIED HEALTH ACTIVIST – FEBRUARY 7, 2019
IN THIS EDITION:
‣ New Community Health Agreement voted up
‣ Physiotherapists keep their Christmas break
‣ Esso Longford Dispute – 596 days going and (still) counting.
‣ Action Alert! Radiation Therapy Under Attack
New Community Health Agreement voted up
We’re pleased to report that the ballot for the Multi-Employer Allied Health Professionals Agreement was successful.
Across the 27 Community Health Centres under the Agreement, 63% of Allied Health Professionals participated in the ballot, and 99% of those responding voted YES.
This means that all Centres except for Sunbury Community Health will be on this Agreement. See below for more information on the Sunbury Community Health campaign.
This result is the culmination of two years hard work for Community Health Members and Delegates, and VAHPA staff and officials.
Much of this is caused by the current legislation which prescribes that workers on mutli-employer agreements can’t take protected industrial action and the long and tedious process we had to engage in to work around that. This means employers and their representatives feel no pressure to bargain efficiently because there’s effectively nothing workers can do if they don’t.
This is why, long beyond our celebration of this win, you’ll be hearing from us about the desperate need for us to #ChangeTheRules.
The new Community Health Agreement provides a range of very significant improvements, including an improved Grade 1 classification structure, faster progression for Grade 1 AHPs doing home visits and automatic progression from Grade 1 to Grade 2 after a year at the top of the Grade 1 year 5.
The Agreement will also provide Community Health AHPs with pay parity with their public sector counterparts. The Agreement includes uplifts at the top of Grades 1, 2 and 3, and contains the following pay increases:
- 5.25% back paid to 12 July 2018
- 3% back paid to 1 November 2018
- 3% from 1 November 2019
- 2% from 1 July 2020
There is also a lump sum payment for the period prior to 12 July 2018. Classification structure improvements will also be effective from 12 July 2018.
The VHIA will now prepare and lodge the required documentation with the Fair Work Commission. Once this is done, VAHPA can submit the documentation required of the union. It is then for Fair Work to review the Agreement; the Agreement becomes operational 7 days after approval and at that point Community Health employers would pay the back pay and pay increases. The backpay and pay increases will be paid after Fair Work approval.
As we say at the conclusion of every round of bargaining, it’s up to you: what you get out of this Agreement. Your pay increases and any associated allowances will occur automatically but everything else relies on VAHPA Members working collectively to ensure the best results – with vigilance comes compliance.
You bargained long and hard for this Agreement; make sure that it’s more than a book on a shelf but rather your toolkit to improving your workplace for you and your co-workers.
Sunbury Community Health
Management at Sunbury Community Health determined that they did not wish to be included in the Mulit-Employer Agreement this round.
his is incredibly disappointing for all employees at Sunbury. However, in making this decision, management at Sunbury have effectively released us from the various legal constraints that apply to multi-enterprise agreements. This means that we are now in a position to ramp up the struggle and ensure that VAHPA members at Sunbury get the outcome they deserve.
We are of course already moving on this. The first of the Sunbury Community Health bargaining meetings was held on Friday 1 February. Members subsequently met on Monday 4 February to consider the matter and discuss options for achieving a speedy and positive conclusion to this round of bargaining.
The decision to pull out of the multi-enterprise agreement is not permanent; there is scope for Sunbury Community Health to re-join the multi-EA during the next round of bargaining